Children with visual impairments often fall into crazy sleep patterns, which is pretty much common knowledge. After having Eddie, I learned that those with Optic Nerve Hypoplasia seem to be infamous for their sleep habits. The amount of sleep he requires is sometimes unsettling. I’ve seen him sleep for one hour and then be up for twenty-four. I can say I’ve even seen this more than once.
Needless to say, Eddie is not allowed to nap. When any napping occurs, his entire sleep schedule is thrown out of sync. It is bad enough that he often gets up around 4:00, but to have him up all night is usually not a treat. Unfortunately, this happened the night before last. I will admit…it all started with a nap.
Eddie woke up at 3:00 on Tuesday morning. When Eddie gets up, he usually spends time exploring the house and playing in his play room. He doesn’t require us to be up with him, but I don’t really entirely go back to sleep either. After opening his bedroom door, changing his diaper, and giving him his first medication of the day, I go back to bed; at least my eyes are closed.
Well, after getting up at 3:00 Tuesday, he fell asleep in the afternoon from 2:00 – 4:00. We woke him up for dinner and some playtime and then he went back to bed at 8:00. Hoping to see him in the morning, we dozed off just before 11:00. Sure enough, at 12:00…yes, midnight…Eddie was knocking on his door hoping to be let out. I looked at the clock and sadly realized I only had one hour of real sleep.
So, Eddie was up, and I was sort-of asleep with one ear open. I’m sure many parents can relate to the fact that I wake up with every loud noise, sudden cry, or loud song he sings. I’m still on alert even though I should be sleeping. By 9:00 Wednesday morning, I was totally exhausted and we were just starting our day. Eddie powered through until noon and then napped until 4:00. I woke him up and kept him up until 10:00 and he finally got back on schedule waking at 6:00 this morning.
It amazes me that due to one earlier than normal morning and a brief nap, it takes 48 hours to get back on track. Eddie seems to be “good to go” but I’m still chugging coffee. He is now six and it has been at least that long since I’ve had regular sleep habits. On top of it all, I decided to phase out the pacifier with his younger sister this week. I figured if I wasn’t going to sleep, I might as well accomplish something. Now, please excuse me while I make another pot of coffee.