Although on the surface it defies logic that an overtired baby would sleep badly, it is in fact very true. I suppose thinking about the days where I have been truly worn out myself, I have often struggled to get to sleep. For the most part we have been good at catching such occasions where H has been overtired and got her to bed efficiently. However, the other night we were fooled in to thinking she had more energy than she did.
A couple of days ago she had her first swimming lesson with Water Babies. She really seemed to enjoy the 30 minute lesson but it tired her right out because she cried the entire time I was dressing her and had fallen asleep before I had even got her back to the car.
She slept on the way home. Then she slept in her Caboo sling on me for 90 minutes that afternoon. When she woke-up at about 5pm she was really full of beans. Sam got back and when we were getting her ready for bed she was happily kicking around on her changing mat. So we let her do it for a little longer than normal. BAD MOVE!
As we started to put her nappy on so I could feed her and get her in to bed, she turned! The crying started so I cuddled her and shushed her. The crying continued so I rocked her and sang to her. The crying got worse so I cuddled her closer. Then she went catatonic. I mean she really, really screamed her lungs out. The face was scrunched and red, little tears streaming down her cheeks. Oh dear.
After a few minutes I finally got her to calm down. I think she also wore herself out. I got her to feed and then when I was putting her PJs on, she seemed cheery again. “Okay, we’re back to normal again now.” I thought. But no. She took almost 45 minutes to settle to sleep – no crying but just thrashing around. Then throughout the night she was flapping, huffing and puffing. She woke more than normal and couldn’t settle herself back to sleep and she was really restless when feeding. Needless to say, Sam and I did not sleep well either.
Moral of the story: Don’t be drawn in by an apparent burst of energy at the end of the day. If she’s been tired / exhausted for most of it, she won’t have suddenly recovered just before bed!
Next week after swimming, she’ll be going to bed early.