Since my first born arrived sleep became a big deal to me. Sleep for the babies and children and mommies and daddies alike. I don’t often mess around when it comes to sleep and, honestly, that’s largely out of fear. Healthy fear. Because if we deviate from the sleep rhythm the whole healthy cycle is thrown off for at least a day and this mommy goes crazy fast.
Well, Myles was a nap conundrum. The boy simply would not sleep for longer than 30 minutes at a time and it was quietly driving me crazy, especially during the days that he got grumpy as a result. Instead of relying on my own or anyone else’s ideas (though I certainly did ask around and experiment on my own) I took it before the Lord in prayer during my nightly prayer time with Maisy. Not regularly, but intermittently (yup, you guessed it, usually after a particularly exhausting Myles day). Well, this last time my prayer was that the Lord would ease Myles’ body into sleep, that he teach his body what it means to take real naps, and that he give me the wisdom and understanding to know what he needs to make it happen.
When the Lord hears us ask for wisdom and understanding, His answer is always yes and I love that so much about Him.
Myles made it obvious that he wanted to nurse before falling sleep. This made me nervous because this can turn into an impossible battle in which a baby can only stay asleep on the breast. So, I did my best to nail his sweet spot: the irrevocably drowsy stage of nursing where I could lay him down and he would open his eyes… but they would immediately slow close again. I also noticed that he seemed to want to be swaddled for naps, not just bed time; if he has access to his arms he can’t stop playing and/or he flinches in his sleep and accidentally rouses himself in doing so.
Well, as of yesterday I’ve not only received some real naps out of him (an hour or two at a time) but he’s also fallen asleep on his own! Yes, he still wants to eat before he falls asleep but sometimes he’s still awake at the end of nursing. Just for kicks, because I honestly thought I’d have to go right back in his room the minute I stepped out, I laid him down in the crib swaddled and fed and completely awake and he fell asleep without a fuss! To say I’m excited is an understatement, I’m overjoyed and my cup overflows with thankfulness to the Lord for providing me with the wisdom and understanding to know what Myles needed in order to get good sleep. This good change may not last forever or even for the long term but I certainly know that in my next season of sleep confusion that I will be taking it before the Lord in the form of asking for wisdom and understanding.
My dose of inspiration for my new way of conversing with God throughout the day, both in asking for help and saying thank you (often out loud when I’m alone) came from the book The Masterpiece by Francine Rivers. The main character does such a thing throughout the book. Honestly, I often felt like this kind of thing was over religious or old school, for the old ladies of the world. You know, “bless his heart” and things like that. Maybe I thought it wasn’t “cool” enough for me. But the longer I read the book the more I realized the beauty of this manner of communing with God and was surprised at myself for having not seen it that way before. I challenge you to turn your ponderings and cries of the heart into actual prayers. Simple stuff like a “Lord help me” as en exhale when you’re frustrated. Or, “thank you Jesus” when he’s graced your life with goodness in a way you shouldn’t ignore. Or, “God you are good” when he’s filled you with peace and joy.
Now I’m on to tackle the night time conundrum as the boy has moved away from his beautiful one waking per night and onto waking every 2 – 3 hours and remaining awake for 40 minutes.