Back when I was a brand new mum six years ago the one thing getting me through the sleepless nights was the promise of unbroken sleep in years to come. HA HA HA. Little did I know that once I became a mum of two, my children would tag team with their sleep dramas and regularly keep me awake in the small hours. Children’s sleep issues are real, people.
Lately, my six year old has been carrying the sleep baton while her two year old sister sleeps like a dream. Oh, the irony. The thing is, with Frog, there is always a reason for her waking, even it it isn’t immediately clear at first. So recently, we’ve been on an investigative hunt to find out the cause of the waking and try to figure out how to solve it.
Here’s what we found out…
Frog has a really vivid imagination and often has bad dreams, or wakes herself up talking (again, due to those dreams). It’s nothing new and only becomes an issue when she can’t get herself back to sleep again. It’s not that she’s upset by the dreams – sometimes she can’t even remember them – it’s that she wakes up and then finds herself unable to drop off. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve woken to find her spookily standing next to me in the middle of the night, waiting for me to roll over so she can get into bed with us.
When I ask her why she comes into our bed, the answer is an obvious one. “I’m lonely”, she says, or “I wanted a cuddle from you.” This is all completely natural and normal – she is only six after all – but it means I spend the rest of the night getting kicked by my starfishing child, or trying to steal back a corner of duvet. Inevitably, either me or the NLM will end up admitting defeat and going to sleep in her bed (while she stays in ours). Not ideal.
A few years ago we had a similar issue. Back when Frog was three she started waking up and coming into our bed. In fact, I wrote about it here, at the time. We discovered that it wasn’t the waking that was the problem, but the getting back to sleep. She’d always been able to settle herself back to sleep, even as a baby, but suddenly she seemed to struggle. This was largely because we had recently moved house and she was going through lots of changes, but also – and most importantly – because she wasn’t comfortable. Getting her a new bed helped MASSIVELY and, suddenly we were back to full nights’ sleep again.
Until recently, that is. We’ve been battling another phase of disturbed sleep and, finally, seem to have an answer. Isn’t it funny how when you’re in the midst of sleep deprivation you don’t have the perspective needed to work out if there’s an answer? Actually, it’s not very funny at all, is it?
Anyway, Sleepbear kindly sent us one of their mattresses to review and, I’m telling you, it’s been a revelation. The mattresses are made from memory foam, but are also covered with a layer of latex. This means they can spring back to their original shape quickly, while also offering the support that memory foam gives.
Having slept on Frog’s old mattress a few times – and tossed and turned over dodgy springs myself – I’m cross with myself that I didn’t twig her sleep issues may be down to something as simple as a lumpy old mattress. I blame sleep deprivation for my stupidity.
Anway, thank you Sleepbear for solving our six year old’s sleep problem. Fingers crossed the two year old doesn’t decide to hit a new “phase” soon.
I’ve chatted a bit more about sleep in my latest vlog where you can also see the mattress in action (i.e. actually being set up – not just being slept on. That would be weird.)…
For more information about how I work with brands check out my Work With Me page.