Saturday, 8 September 2012

Melatonin, schmelatonin

Dag nam it!!!  My great white hope has been at least temporarily dashed!  I mentioned in a recent post that I finally broke down and ordered melatonin for Jack- it is a natural sleep aid that many parents I have spoken with use for their children on the spectrum- particularly kids with aspergers.  Those brilliant little minds just can't seem to shut down enough to sleep through the night.  And after 5 1/2 years of not sleeping through the night- John and I are well, tired.  And John is cranky.  I, of course, am completely charming at all times (right honey??? lol)  I figured that this weekend would be a great time to try it out, as Jack is already exhausted to begin with from his first week of full-day kindergarten.  Surely this combination would give us a really really good chance of a full night's sleep.

So I gave him a dropper full of melatonin at about 6:45 last night.  By about 7:20 his little eyelids were drooping, and John and I were practically salivating at the thought of him going to and staying in bed without a fight.  He passed out almost right away.  And Nathan being Nathan fell asleep while I was rocking him and singing (maybe it's a defense mechanism, haha).  So by 8:15 we were free!  Usually Jack is up and down at least 10 times before going to sleep, so this in and of itself was a pretty big victory.  We had a nice, quiet evening, went to bed, and then.....

3:15- moooooooommmmmmmm!!!!!  help, starscream's gun!  where did it go? where is it?  help, help help!!!  You see, here was my first mistake.  Yesterday afternoon, as a reward for being a good boy his first week of school I gave him a small transformer that becomes a plane.  I had to give it to him in the afternoon because of school, which is unfortunate because the first rule of giving a new toy (particularly one that relates to an obsession) to a kid with aspergers is that it must be given to them first thing in the morning.  It is the only way that they have the chance to calm down a little and be able to unwind enough to sleep by bedtime.  We have had many a sleepless night when Jack has been given a new plane, or robot.  We once gave him a ride-on airplane, right around the time Nate was born, as a big brother present.  I had to cut a picture of the plane off of the box and tape it on the wall next to his bed in order to get him to lie down.  And none of us slept a wink that night.  I kinda hoped we were past that.  Anyhoo, I found the gun- without my glasses on- it's approximately the size of my thumb, so that was pretty impressive.  I told him to stay in bed.  returned to our bed

3:45- thud!!!  mommy, daddy, my bed is too crowded!  I have to sleep with you!  OK, so the reasoning behind this excuse is a mystery to me. 1 twin bed to yourself, or a queen bed with 3 people....which has more space?  Right?  So I walked him back to bed, told him if he wanted to keep starscream he'd better stay put this time, and went back to our bed.

4:20- I can't be alone!!!! I'm so lonely!!!  Mooommmmyyyy come here!!  I need protection!!!  I sent John this time as I was not going to be so comforting at this point.  Plus, John often conks out while in there, and Jack follows suit, and then everyone sleeps.  No such luck.  John came back to bed after the requisite 10 minutes and the rest of this early morning hours were spent shuffling back and forth, trying to get Jack to stay in bed, and finally giving up at around 5:30. Then tolerating him lying between us and alternately kicking us in the face and shins depending on what position he had thrashed himself into at that point for about an hour.  Then- breakfast.

So I remain my same zombie self.  I fell asleep in the OT waiting area this morning, as usual.  We WILL try again tonight.  Pray for us.  and for Jack if he doesn't sleep.  Kidding.  kind of.

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