I’ve been down the rabbit hole for a while now and I’m working on getting out. Things hit a very bad point last week after weeks of not sleeping plus all the other shit life can throw at you. Max refuses to sleep, plain and simple. Sparky has been traveling or working so much that Max’s care rested solely on my shoulders and it finally caught up.
Me: I hate that the neighbors are playing that music so loud I can hear it through the three-foot brick walls.
Me: Don’t you hear that? They play it just at that level that I can’t figure out what it is, just random music.
Sparky: You hear it right now?
Me: Yeah, I’ve been listening to it for the last week. I think it’s the Belgians. The damn smoking Belgians.
Sparky, paying attention now: Huh. Do you see shadows?
Me: I always see shadows. I think I just need a follow-up appointment from the Lasik.
Sparky: OoooKaaaay. You are getting sleep right now. Jen, there isn’t any music. The building is silent.
Me: Shut up. You can’t hear that?
Sparky: This is not good. You are hallucinating.
Turns out, one needs sleep to function. Sparky, being fully aware of how the brain functions, finally figured out that mine was not functioning the way it should. The next day he took Max and I slept for six hours straight. It was fabulous. Then Max and I stayed up all night again and Sparky went back to work.
Do you see the problem?
We are working on the problem, but like with everything here, it’s a slow process. It is in these moments I hate being here, I resent being in Krautland where I have no family and no immediate support system because my family is too far away. It’s the worst part of being an expat. I just need family to come over and take Max for a few hours so I can sleep. Or to talk to me or to figure out that I’m slowly going mad from lack of sleep and utter isolation before the music starts playing in my head.
The day after that talk with Sparky I called my aunt. She’ll be here December 1st. I just have to make it until then and she’ll be here and I can let go, without fear, for a few hours and finally fucking sleep.
We are interviewing nannies or babysitters or tagesmutters or whatever you call the lady that comes over two/three times a week to give me time. But again, that takes time.
Until then, I’m holding on. Sparky is out-of-town again. Max is teething and vaccinations are tomorrow. I’m praying he sleeps for more than his usual 30 minute cycle tonight. The good thing about vaccinations is that they make him tired. He sleeps. That’s the point I’ve gotten to, hoping vaccinations will make him tired enough so that I can get more than 30 minutes to 1 hour of sleep at a time. Hoping that I can close my eyes long enough for them to stop burning before he wakes up again.
Just for the record, I have all the books from Dr. Sears to Ferber and all the books and theories in between. I’ve tried them all, but I can’t focus enough to get it right. He doesn’t co-sleep well, but he doesn’t sleep well in his crib. He can’t self-soothe back to sleep and the one time I let him cry it out, he and I cried for three hours before I gave up. I just can’t figure it out in the state I’m in. I just can’t do it alone.
Patti will be here in 2 weeks. She calls me every day to tell me how many more days until she arrives.
That is what family is for.