W was one of those newborns that slept like a dream. I had that baby thing down. I wasn’t sleep deprived! Up once a night? No problem. He went to bed late, but when he was down, he gave us a great stretch. I was functioning in the day like it was no problem. I hit the baby sleep lottery!

Smug and oh so very naïve.

We went through the four month sleep regression. Then we started teething. And then he started having intense leaps and developments.

And somewhere in there a good night sleep became a blue moon.

When you’re up in the middle of the night wondering why, you come up with a lot of theories. Here are some of my maybe plausible, and some of my ridiculous theories of why we don’t sleep.

Sleep? That's funny! Look who's the smug one now.

He is too busy to eat in the day
Feeds are much shorter in the day, despite my best efforts, so he makes up for it in the night. His feeds have often been longer in the middle of the night than in the day.


My milk isn’t fatty enough
Maybe my milk content isn’t quite as fatty, so he needs to eat more than most babies?

Teething, always teething
My nearly 10 month old has 7 teeth, with seemingly more on the way. Teething is always the default reason.

His crib is evil
He sleeps better next to us most of the time, and inevitably at one point in the night it just is the worst place in the world, and he needs to be next to us.

Developmental leaps
We’re in crazy learning mode over here. Crawling, scooting, pulling to stand, cruising, speaking, signing, dancing. Lots of crazy leaps and learning. Lots of reasons to screw with sleep.

He inherited my sleep habits
“Just like your mommy!” is something my mom says quite frequently. I didn’t sleep well as a baby, and well, neither does my son.

Something is wrong
There is no rhyme, reason or pattern to his wake times. He knows how to sleep long stretches, so if he is up a lot, there is a reason. Teething? Upset tummy? Nightmare? There are lots of reasons I can come up with in the middle of the night. I struggle to night wean because I just feel like he needs me, and I know this is temporary.

Maybe he needs to see a osteopath
I’ve had a few people tell me that bringing their baby to the osteopath has resulted in miraculous sleep solutions. It’s not above me and we have an appointment next month.

He’s trying to kill me
This reason is reserved for 4+ wake-ups. HE IS TRYING TO KILL ME THROUGH SLEEP DEPRIVATION.

.  .  .  .  .

I spend a lot of time thinking about this, but at the same time, as much as it sucks, I know this too shall pass, and he’ll only wake like this for so long. He seems to know when it’s gone too far (or also hit that breaking point) and has a few good nights in a row just to allow me to catch up a bit. I never thought I’d be happy to see 2.5 hours, or 3 hour stretches of sleep. Four the holy grail? We’ve only seen over five a couple times in the past four months, and of course those are usually wasted on me being awake for a good chunk of it.

What reasons do you come up with for your sleep deprivation?