Things I DO When I Haven't Been Able to Sleep
This blog post is really a spot light shinning on the faithful autism parents who have the craziest sleep schedules because their children DON'T SLEEP!!!
Josh is my oldest and was the one who conditioned me to the ongoing sleepless nights. I remember putting him into the car seat and driving him around for hours and hours, hoping he would fall asleep. And he would, as long as I was driving, but as soon as I would stop he was wide awake. Over the years Josh has mastered THREE consecutive days with zero amount of sleep. It was sad to watch his little body fall apart like that. He would run from one end of the room to the other at full speed and crash as hard as he could into the walls for input. By day three his body was so overloaded from not shutting down that he pulled an entire bookshelf over on top of him. The adrenaline was so intense for him he finally went to sleep, except this time I couldn't let him sleep because we were so worried about a concussion. He was only three years old.
See I tell this story and for anyone who has not been in this situation it seems too unreal to be true. But for those of us that lived in this reality we have a perspective on what I call an "autism family lifestyle," only those who have been there will "get it".
My heart truly goes out to the families who are still looking for solutions to their child (ren)'s sleep challenges. We are thankful for melatonin and Clonidine for Josh and Hydroxyzine for Izzy. Without these medicines my children will not fall asleep. (Period)
Today's Sleep deprived story:
So even though my kid's medicine works at getting them to sleep it doesn't always keep them asleep. If they hear unfamiliar noises or something just happens to wake them up, they are up till the next night when they get their medicine again. :O)
Izzy has been regularly getting up at somewhere between 1:30AM and 2:00AM this past week. When she gets up I try to get her back to sleep if I can or give her something to occupy her busy little brain so I can get any additional sleep if possible. I hand her a tablet and let her watch Netflix, take a warm shower, get her a snack literally ANYTHING to get even an hour or more of sleep. Sometimes after about 3 showers and endless supply of the Spanish version of Bob Zoom on Netflix she might fall back asleep. If I'm lucky. The trick is getting her to sleep and keeping her quiet so she doesn't wake up Josh. Josh is a little harder to get back in bed. If he wakes up the whole house better be ready because Josh wakes up and his daily routine start right then. Then he is 'off' the entire day. Its a juggling act having two on the spectrum, which I think it has its perks as far as parenting strategies go.
SO this morning, after keeping this kind of schedule all week, Izzy woke me up and wanted Romine noodles. I would have said no to this request had I even been coherent, which I wasn't. I then managed to put the dry noodles in the microwave without any water in the bowl. I set the bowl in the microwave for 3 minutes and went back to bed. I then woke up to the awful burning smell of romaine noodles and ran to the kitchen to assess the problem. I thought I was burning pop corn which I would have been more okay with than Romine. I wrapped up the situation and headed back to bed. After falling back to sleep, I'm again woke by the adorable blondie next to me asking with "her words" (her language skills are limited, but growing everyday) for my cell phone. Which without a thought I handed the phone over like a little zombie puppet. By the time I had realized what I had done I snatch the phone from her hands as she was putting angry faces on people Facebook comments. Which I very rarely use that button, so if you happen to see that I gave you an angry face on a comment that you posted on Facebook please just know that I did not put that there. My daughter thinks it looks funny. It wasn't me. So I set my phone up with Netflix and turn on guided access and return it back to her so I could go back to sleep. As she starts to fall back asleep and I began to join her in sleepy land, and in walks my handsome son, making his good morning noises and ripping the cover off our bed. Izzy sets up out of her sleep and gladly announces, "IT's MORNING TIME!!"
and its only 4:30AM.
It's insane I know. If you're a mom of a kid or kids who don't sleep I fully believe we are going to get the best of beds in heaven where we are allowed to sleep until we can't physically sleep anymore. :) This was a day that coffee couldn't even cure.
On that note what am I still doing up. I should be sleeping while the kids are sleeping.
Good night you all and best of luck and try to get as much sleep as possible. You'll need it. :)
That Autism MOM