My daughter seems to be teething non-stop these days. While I’m glad she has more than two teeth, it means she sleeps very fitfully. Any noise will wake her. She’ll take an hour to settle down. She’ll just want to be held for an hour. And the teeth come in one…at…a…time. This mommy is tired.
For as long as I can remember, I have always had bouts of vivid dreams. Sometimes they only lasted a week. Sometimes they occurred almost every night for a month. I drew inspiration from them, used them as the foundations of my stories. I looked forward to sleep just so I could escape into an amazing adventure.
There were nightmares, too, terrifying dreams that kept me up and haunted my waking hours, until I was 14. They taught me the dark side of my psyche, showed me the darkness that lurked in my mind that could break free if I wasn’t careful.
When I got pregnant with my first, I had read about vivid dreams being common. I laughed and wondered how I would be able to tell the difference. Truth is, I couldn’t. Vivid dreams were par for the course for me.
After those long sleepless newborn nights, I looked forward to getting back to my usual dreams. But something was different. They were still vivid, but sleep deprivation had done something to them.
Details were clear as day. The adventures were more exciting. The people felt real, like I actually knew them. I was immersed in my dreams, feeling completely untethered from reality. It was like living a second life.
Night after night. They were almost nightly. But, with my son, that level of vividity passed quickly, when he established a nighttime waking routine that only wavered during sleep regressions.
Then my daughter came. And I returned to this amazing dream world. At over a year she still doesn’t sleep with any consistency. I spend more days sleep deprived than not. Sometimes I feel like a functional zombie.
But I don’t complain. Much. Hurry up and come in, teeth! I live for the nights when I do sleep. Because I know this dream world is waiting for me. I am ready to dive back into these incredible dreams, these sleep deprived dreams that provide enough wonder and adventure to help get me through the long days.
I want her to sleep though the night. But I am also not ready yet. Though I am ready for teething to be done.
Dream world, I hope you welcome me back tonight.