Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Cure for insomniac two year old

We are at our wits end. Little Philip has nightly now, awakened at 3:00 or 3:30 a.m., without fail, for about a month. He is not able to fall back asleep. He will cry out for mommy and daddy for a few minutes, then we hear him pad across the floor, plant his head against the door and quietly repeat "eat, eat"..."eat, eat, mommy"

Out of fear that he will either starve to death before morning or fall asleep standing up against that door, one of us will go into his room. If we try to put him back in the bed, he becomes very upset, wailing, and then he really isn't going back to bed at all. We bring him back to our bed where 70% of the time, he immediately lies down and falls asleep or plays "kick mommy/daddy in the head all night." The other 30% of the time he again says "eat, eat"...". We've brought goldfish, bananas, and rice cakes to our bed but to no avail. He's up for good at that point, until about 6:00 a.m. when he falls back asleep, just as we are waking up and need him to start his day as well.

Last night we fed him an hour later, had a ton of people over for dinner which included lots of playtime with three other little ones. He went to bed at 10:00 p.m. He got up at 5:00 a.m. and repeated the above ritual.

We feel like we have a newborn again. We are exhausted and it is starting to show. My mother says this is a typical phase. Could it be teething? He has one top 2 yr molar in but no others. Could it be nightmares and he just isn't able to communicate that to us?


the skocelai said...

hmmm... don't know what to tell you except that my first guess was a growth spurt. but a month is awfully long for a growth spurt. could be fear. does he have a nightlight? try that, but you may be in the position of having to break the "habit". i'm so sorry!

Amanda said...

I feel your pain! MacKenzie is 2 1/2 and we go through the same thing nightly just kinda reversed. She doesn't want to go to bed. At bed time, which is supposed to be around 8 or 8:30 she looks at me and says "I not seepy mommy". I have to fight her tooth and nail to get her to bed. Most nights I, like you, give in and bring her to my bed and then I get kicked in the head all night. I have tried to wait her out so I can scoop her up and return her to her bed after she falls asleep but she usually outlasts me. This past week I have been leaving the hall light on for her and it seems to have helped get her down earlier. She still gets up a few times, but I'm not up until midnight fighting her anymore. Now she's usually down around 9:30. Good luck with this battle. I know it seems we can never win with 2 year olds.

Shelia said...

We've had similar issues with Callen. She'd pitch a fit if we tried to put her back in her bed and for several months we kept bringing her to bed with us. After a while, I said this is enough as I just wasn't sleeping. She likes to kick us, roll around, etc. We ended up doing a cry it out again with her. She still wakes up some, but we try to get to her before she gets too riled up. We hold her and talk to her softly and then after a few minutes put her back to bed (and lock the door). If we didn't lock her in she kept coming down the hall, etc. I hate doing it, but she seems to have learned now that she needs to go back to sleep in her own bed. You may have to do the cry it out again at some point. I feel your pain!!