Buds in Bloom: Turning Points … Sleep

To say Ricky changed the dynamics of our household is like saying huskies only shed a little bit. A serious understatement to say the least.
Ricky to Eddie is the Sun to the Moon; complete opposites in every way possible.
Eddie was a calm child who loved to play with his Lego in the same place for hours on end watching the TV. He would have a nap in the early afternoon, get up content and have something to eat while smiling at the dogs.
Ricky on the other hand couldn’t stay still for love or money. If he wasn’t trying to climb down the stairs at the tender age of 18 months in pursuit of the dogs, he was making a mess in the kitchen with Nestle Quick container. It was a serious time of adjustment. Another Turning Point. Ricky would have to be strapped into his high chair and fed by hand or the food would be all over the place.
And let us talk about bedtime for a moment.
When Eddie was ready for bed, we get him ready with the minimum of fuss, turn on his favourite bedtime music toy and off to sleep. Such was not the way with Ricky.
Ricky was the energizer bunny connected to the power grid; he just kept going and going. At first, we were slightly amused, but after several days of no sleep, early mornings, and late work days, our patience was coming to an end. We needed relief and a solution.
You see, Ricky’s sleep patterns were all messed up. He would get up at 6 A.M., play until 10 A.M., have a nap until noon, up for lunch and going non-stop until 10 or 11 P.M. at night. Then just for fun, he’d hop out of his crib for late night exercise. Energizer Bunny indeed.
So, my wife and I decided to try something new before we’d end up doing something we’d regret. Thank the stars for melatonin*. Now before you think this product is something you’d have to get a prescription for, it comes over the counter at your local pharmacy. Be warned, some kids can have nightmares when on it so as always when trying medications of any sort, monitor your children closely for adverse effects. For example, Eddie tended to have nightmares when we needed to use it for him early on, so we stopped once we found out about this little side effect.
It took 6 weeks to fully change Ricky’s sleep pattern; a great Turning Point for him and us as the stress levels in the house dropped dramatically. To this day, he is still a bundle of energy. We now know to put him in several of after school activities that help him calm down at bedtime.
With that I shall pause our story here and pick it up with more stories about our little family in the next instalment. Take care of yourselves and each other.
Nick Baane, Father of Eddie and Ricky
Thank you Nick Baane for this candid share. Sleep deprivation can be life threatening. Your story brings up an important topic to talk about. Here are a few evidence-based resources and suggestions of where to look for support resources in your geographic area.
Resources for Sleep: The evidence