So, Wesley gets leg cramps.
Before we go any further, let me assure you: We have tried your method! I promise! He’s been suffering from them off and on since he was 2, they’re growing pains that follow a pattern, and we’ve tried EVERYTHING. We have a system of methods we try in order of least disruptive and it’s a functioning system. I only add this because – I find that “leg cramps” garners more advice than breastfeeding or diapering. I think because everyone remembers the horror of it and wants to impart their learned wisdom. So, I want to stop anyone from stressing, we’ve tried your method! I assure you! It might have worked for us, it might be part of our system, but don’t stress about sharing it. After three years we’ve heard it all!
Now, back to leg cramps.
For years he would just wake up screaming because he was too young to really process the whole situation. But around 4 1/2 or so we were able to convince him to get us quietly when they start hurting and now wait until it got that bad and not just lay in his bed screaming.
Life got SO MUCH BETTER. It’s a lot easier to be woken up with a tap at the door or a soft, “Mom?” than the screaming bloody murder. I would wake up a lot more accommodating because my adrenaline wasn’t rushing and my nerves weren’t fried from the sudden, “AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!”
But then, out of the blue, last week he went back to the screaming method. TWICE now he’s done the Waking By Terrorizing when he’s gotten leg cramps and MAN. I am NOT a good mother when he wakes me up like that.
In my defense, it’s not that rational – my anger. It’s the crazy rush of adrenaline and then frustration and irritation combined with exhaustion and sleep deprivation but I am NOT nice. Last night I basically guilted him about his leg cramps. My immediate response was, “OH MY GOD, WESLEY. WHY DO YOU WAKE ME UP SCREAMING, AND WHY NOT WAKE UP YOUR DAD? STOP CRYING OH MY GOD YOU NEED TO CALM DOWN. I AM SO TIRED!!!!!”
It was not my finest moment. Which I realized as soon as I woke up enough to REALLY process his pain and also he started apologizing through his tears, “Momma…I’m sorry…I’m sorry…My leg just hurts…”
Yeah. I woke up enough to realize, Oh, man. I’m a big piece of steaming poop of a Mom right now.
I eventually woke up enough, and stabilized enough, to address his needs. I worked through our system and eventually got him back to sleep, albeit restlessly.
Yeah…not my finest parenting moment. Yelling at my kid for having pain he can’t control. Guilting him about needing me when he’s hurting me. So, let’s hope he’ll go back to waking me up QUIETLY and GENTLY so that I have better odds at being helpful and not, you know, a giant beeyatch.