Sleep.. Or Lack Of Sleep....

Firstly, I've just realised how much I enjoy writing outdoors. I have my laptop set up on the table in the back garden, it's early evening and just cool enough that I need a Jumper on. In one word, it is perfect.

For some reason it feels like my thoughts and ideas flow more freely when I'm somewhere I enjoy writing and outdoors seems to be that place for me.. Which is odd considering I'm a homebody that loves the indoors..

So, earlier this week I made an appointment with James' Health Visitor to discuss a couple of things that I was worried about. James was a very high needs baby. He suffered from Acid Reflux until he was 14 months old and pretty much everything that he ate came out the same way it went in, normally within minutes. Add this to a milk & soya intollerance and an allergy to wheat & gluten.. It makes for a very cranky baby.

Most of his issues, apart from his Wheat & Gluten allergy have been resolved.. Except one..

Going into this whole parenting thing I expected that I would spend many nights awake with a baby.. However I did not think that three years down the line I would still be saying.. "My child does not sleep through the night..."
Most people laugh when they hear this but let me assure you I stopped laughing about it roughly about 2 years ago... A Mummy needs her sleep!
James has always had a bedtime and he's always been excellent about going to bed. He doesn't need us to sit with him, he doesn't need rocking, he doesn't get out of bed a million times before finally falling asleep.. We read him a story, ask him what his favorite part of the day was, tuck him in and give him his final cuddles of the day and he's (normally) out like a light.
For the first three or four hours you could literally stand in his room with a megaphone screaming and wouldn't wake him. After that.. Forget it.. He's awake and therefore so is everyone else.
We've tried everything. Later bedtime, earlier bedtime, wearing him out during the day, bath before bed, no bath before bed, snack before bed, main meal in the middle of the day, in our bed, in his own bed, upstairs, downstairs.. Nothing works!
The other night I thought.. Everytime he gets out of bed I will just put him back in his own bed, tell him that it is the middle of the night and he has to sleep. I figured that eventually he would have to go back to sleep! HA! Who was I kidding.. He just laid silently in bed.. Eyes wide open.. For hours.. Literally until the morning. I have no idea how he does it.
Cue me phoning the health visitor literally begging for her help.. She thinks she knows what the problem is...
(Before I write this let me just say that I do not under any circumstances think that James is a 'gifted' or genius child! He is just a little sponge that literally soaks up any knowledge that he can get his hands on. I have a child that would rather practice his ABC's than play with toys..)
Anyway, she came over. She assessed him in his normal day to day activities, she spoke with him and myself.. She has refered us to the Community Peadatricians but she believes that because James is slightly above where he should be academically he basically has a hard time switching his brain off. For examples, a lot of nights that he is awake he will sit there singing the alphabet or talking about Maths or Spelling.. His Dad is like this too so I think I know where he gets it from!
We've changed a few things to his bedtime routine since her visit.. There is strictly no TV for the couple of hours before bedtime. He has a bath right before bed instead of after dinner, I spend an extra ten to fifteen minutes talking to him once he's in bed so if there is anything on his mind then we can talk about it before it wakes him up at midnight! Pretty much I'm trying to make bedtime as relaxing as I can for him.
The first night we tried this he slept the whole way throught the night! The next morning I'm pretty sure I saw Unicrons flying across the rainbow filled sky! The next couple of nights were not so good. Last night the Unicorns flew again and he slept the whole way through till 7.15am this morning. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for tonight!

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