Sunday, February 21, 2010

The Importance of Understanding

I got a full nights sleep!!!  Its amazing how much better and brighter the day is when you get a straight eight hours sleep with no interruptions, no little feet dancing in the bed, no elbows or extra limbs (you know our kiddies grow an extra set of legs and arms when the lights go out... well it feels that way when you are getting the autie or aspie version of Riverdance on your back or head during the wee hours!)



I had become increasingly frustrated lately as every time Munchkin slept in her dads house, he would report that she had no problems sleeping and made me question even more my own parenting skills.  I wondered it if was the double bed she gets to sleep in that helped her settle well there. Or the fact that he marches her up mountains and they are constantly on the go when she's there so was tired out.  I racked my brains and though that if I did the same, she may sleep here.  I dragged her to the beach, the forest, marathon trampoline sessions or if it rained, the bed in the spare room had its strength seriously tested.  But no, like every other night, she resisted sleep til gone midnight.  Things marginally improved after I was given a prescription for Melatonin from the paediatrician during her review and I could get her to bed 9.30ish each night but she never stayed asleep.

It was only after her recent OT assessment that it was explained to me that Munchkin wasn't actually kicking me or hitting me but sensory seeking by pressing her feet and limbs up against me.  Its very common with kids with proprioceptive problems.  She constantly seeks input to gauge her position by pressing up against me over and over during the night. Once I knew why she did this, it actually didn't bother me as much anymore.  Its amazing what a dash of understanding can add to the mix!  She used to only sleep as a baby if my arm was across her chest (not my hand, just my forearm) and the OT recommended that I use a weighted blanket in the report I received the other day.  It was only then that things fell into place regarding her sleeping pattern at her dads.  While explaining the report to him, he informed me that he uses two duvets and a blanket at his house as he didn't want her to be cold and he couldn't afford to use the heating.  She was getting the equivalent of a weighted blanket while there!  With this new information, I set to work that night.  I got a heavier duvet and stuffed it into her single cover. I put a bed rail up, as the OT explained that even though she doesn't fall out of bed, she would be subconsciously checking her proximity to the edge.  I put her to bed and waited for the magic to happen....

3am and there is screeching at the stairgate in her room... I go to the room to see that she has stripped off earlier in the night as dirtied her nappy and got back into bed.  She's then wet the bed so that was the end of that attempt!  I had thought we'd got past the stripping off in bed stage but will have to break out the Houdini suits again.



Last night we tried again.  On of the facebook mums suggested a duvet under her also so I set up the bed.  One duvet under her, a feather and down pillow and a doubled up duvet on top of her. She's in her Houdini suit so we're good to go.  4 mg Melatonin and some milk and lets see what happened.  I sneaked back up ten minutes later to check on her and.......




She may be holding onto the wall and rail but she looks so snug in her cocoon!  And yes, amazingly, she stayed there all night :D   I have fingers, toes and eyes crossed that it continues to work as I feel like a different person today.  If not, I may have to reconsider the duct tape and staples solution... (relax, I'm only joking so take your finger off the speed dial to the social workers hehe)

13 comments:

Looking for Blue Sky said...

I am so glad this worked and you finally have a night's sleep. She looks so cute and peaceful in the picture! I can relate to lots of this stuff as well. My son won't sleep in his own bed any longer - he says he gets lonely, and when he was little he liked the across arm. He also likes deep pressure : "please sit on me!", so I may try some of these ideas!

coolkid said...

ah hun delighted it worked, i know how the sleep thing is draining you as i too going through it, i hope to god for you that this is a result that keeps working xx

Taz said...

Yay for sleep! xx

Jen said...

The photo is gorgeous, especially as she stayed asleep the entire night. I am making a weighted blanket at the moment as my little fella throws himself around a lot during the night and I think it is sensory seeking, fingers crossed it works as well as your efforts have:) Jen.

Andra said...

We have constant tossing and turning with Kyle, it starts early on in the night and lasts until he goes into deep sleep, this is always when his seizures happened, he couldn't cross over from wakeful to deep sleep, even now that he is stable he still has twitches and has to be watched carefully, for us its a constant reminder that the meds are keeping this at bay. I haven't slept a full nights sleep in three years because of it. Hope the duvet and bedrail prove to be successful and you get many more nights sleep.

Hammie said...

Brilliant! xx

Jean said...

The photo of Herself speaks a thousand words XXX

Debbie said...

Yay for a good nites sleep!! fingers crossed she keeps it up honey. Debbie xx

KWombles said...

Awww, she's so sweet. :-) I'm so glad you both got a complete night of sleep!

popsie said...

my heart goes out to anyone not getting their sleep as i was a nervous wreck and a cranky bag of cats when i didnt get any. i really hope it works for you. xx

jazzygal said...

That's fantastic news Petunia! Hope it's lasting and you're continuing to get your nights sleep. Such a simple solution too. xx Jazzy

Trish @ Another Piece of the Puzzle said...

So glad you have found a solution - not sleeping is the worst! Our son has responded well to melatonin, thankfully, but we do have a weighted blanket that we pull out when he wants it.

TherExtras said...

Actually, I have recommended duct tape for night-time strippers. Some have said it works! You are brave to use duvets - I guess the Houdini suits are completely effective - precluding the need for duct tape!

How's it going since this was first posted?

Barbara

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