Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Sleep-deprived

My 5 year old is a talker.

So much so that she even talks (loudly) in her sleep. The first time she did it, she was about 18 months old. She was sleeping in our bed at the time and in the middle of the night sat up and yelled, "NO MAMA! MORE CHIPS!"

Needless to say, the Mister and I were jolted awake. She fell right back asleep, but we were up for a good 20 minutes giggling about it.

We thought it was a fluke, but over the years it's gotten more and more frequent.

She doesn't do it every night, but when she does it is our own personal hell. Being woken from a dead sleep every other hour is like being tortured.

Mostly she yells at me during her late night diatribes which makes me feel absolutely awful, not to mention a bit defensive. What did I do? Does she secretly hate me for not letting her wear her bathing suit and a feather boa to preschool? Is she still angry I dared to bring another kid onto her turf?

The scariest part is when I (or my husband) go into her room to check on her and she is sitting up in bed shouting, but still completely asleep. I've tried to wake her from what seemed like a nightmare, but to no avail. A few times her eyes were actually open (which freaks me out to no end), but she isn't aware or awake.

After particularly bad nights, I've asked her about her dreams over breakfast the next morning. She never remembers anything scary or bad so I don't imagine it is doing her any harm. I just have to wonder what is going on in her mini-subconcious to make her do this. Surely I have scarred her in some way--but how?

I suppose years down the road when she is telling her therapist about the time I wouldn't let her eat Laffy Taffy for breakfast, we'll figure this one out.

1 comment:

Mark said...

Actually, this is not anything that you have done wrong. Sleep disorders of this kind are genetic flukes (18 months is too young and too resiliant for you to have screwed her up), but the worrying note is that she sits up. There is a mechanism that paralyzes us when we start to dream so we don't act those dreams out. It sounds like hers doesn't work at 100%. Keep an eye on her to see she doesn't sleep walk. And mention this to her pediatrician.

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