Tuesday, June 15

accommodating seasons

My mind was led back to the early baby days.  Bringing home a newborn baby and adjusting to those frequent wake-ups of a hungry newborn.  At first it's quite do-able as you can't get enough of looking at that sweet baby face even in the dark, but after a few weeks a tired young mom begins to long for sleep and there's a little more spirited fight within - which may be accompanied with a whine or grumble - to take care of this necessity of motherhood.  That is soon followed by the stage of trying to figure out what you can do to get the baby to sleep longer at night so you can get some sleep, too.  Maybe if you watch their daytime naps closer and keep them short or keep them awake later or change your diet or add some white noise or the list goes on.  After trying a variety of things which have not made a dent in this baby's schedule, you finally give in and realize this is life with a baby.  Time to accommodate this schedule with things to make life easier like closing the bedroom door around the 4 AM feeding so when this baby finally settles into a good early morning sleep you won't be woken up by other children getting up and remembering to set down bowls and cereal boxes so they can eat without your help.  Or not staying up late to finish up this or that but instead going to bed when the baby goes to bed.  Or keeping a water bottle and a snack nearby so thirst and hunger aren't nagging during the night.  Once the schedule has been supported a bit, it seems that you actually get used to sleep deprivation and life goes smoother.

Deja vu.....the feeling that one has seen or heard something before 

My mind was led to today.  No baby schedule to attempt to figure out, instead a body headed into menopause.  At first the waking up off and on all night is do-able since it's new and you aren't certain how long it will last or exactly what else will be ahead and you realize that there are some benefits to this new season of life.  But after a few weeks of interrupted sleep accompanied by hot and cold episodes and daytime fuzzy brainedness, a tired older mom begins to long for sleep and there's a little more spirited fight within - which may be accompanied with a whine or grumble - to take care of this normal passage of womanhood.  That is soon followed by the stage of trying to figure out what you can do to get your body to sleep longer and better at night.  Exercise during the day, cut back on coffee sipping ending by noon, plenty of water, a little bit of soy added into the diet, perhaps a supplement or two.  After trying a variety of things which have not made a dent in your body's symptoms, you finally give in and realize this is life with a menopausal body.  Time to accommodate this schedule with things to make life easier.  Going to bed earlier to capture the best sleep of the night.  Or praying for loved ones while you wait for the hot to change to cold.  Or eating a light snack before bed and keeping a cold water bottle nearby for the ups and downs of the night.  Once the schedule has been supported a bit, it seems that you actually get used to sleep deprivation and life goes smoother.

Yup, if you can't fight it, you might as well join it in the best manner you can come up with for the season of life you are currently living.
Funny, but I was recently reading on my doula email list about the things that doulas keep in their labor bag and one suggestion was a hand held paper fan for when a laboring mom hits that 'hot' time.  As I was thinking about what a great idea that was for a new mom, I suddenly realized it was also a great idea for an old mom, too, and picked up a pack of four hand held paper fans from the dollar store.  


May you find ways to accommodate life in your garden no matter what season you are in because a contented mom is a very good thing!


Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

10 comments:

Laura said...

As a mom who is on the young end of the spectrum, I find it so interesting how life comes full circle like that. We always think, "well, when I get to XYZ stage of life, I won't have to worry about (babies crying in the night, small children nightmares, can't sleep because I didn't make the first dentist appointment for... etc). Thank you for the reality check that a woman's sleep does not come easy! :0) By the way, the fans for being in labor (or during hot flashes!! :0) ) is a GREAT idea!

mom said...

You know, I always hesitate sharing these kinds of things because they can quite possibly NOT be an encouragement! At least there's a few years in-between where sleep is a little more indulging :-)

And yes, the fans are a great idea! Much better than grabbing hospital paperwork off the mom's nightstand to use as a makeshift fan LOL!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

keri said...

Phew! You had me a little bit alarmed at first that you were going to make an announcement on here.... lol! ;)

And yes, the fan idea is great for laboring moms!!

mom said...

HA! Now THAT would be a surprise, wouldn't it? ;-)

And yes, the fan is a great idea although not necessary if you have someone who can constantly adjust an electric fan for you during labor ;-)

Love you,
Mom

keri said...

LOL! Yes, that was woooonderful! Although we forgot to bring it with us to the hospital. At least next time you'll have your fans, eh?! lol!

mom said...

WHAT?! Did anybody else hear that?! She said NEXT time! Woo hooooooo!

LOL!

Love you!
Mom :-)

Kimmie said...

hmm...you know that I am stuck on the babies ;-) forgive me, it is just how God has wired me. As tired as I am, Bruce and I are asking God about another adoption. Crazy, maybe, but I will catch up on sleep in heaven
;-)

Thank you for sharing and putting a postive, good hearted twist into menapause.

xoxo
Kimmie

mom said...

Kimmie, you simply amaze me! Should I be praying about the next one to join your family? :-)

I do adore babies, but am quite delighted with those babies being in the form of grandbabies at this point or babies of friends. I can stay content as long as I have baby cheeks somewhere to kiss!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

Jo's Corner said...

Hi Tammy ~ I found your blog on Kimmie's blog and I Love it! You have the Sweet Heart of Jesus. Aahh, a wonderful thing to strive for! I'm working on it! It's been awhile since you wrote this post, but I wanted to share something that has really helped me with some of the "unpleasant-ness" of MP...Black Cohash. It has eased a lot of the hot-flashes and mood swing stuff. I look forward to following your blog. (I have one, but I find it hard to sit down and do a post!)
Take Care and Blessings Galore! Jo

mom said...

It's nice to meet you, Jo, and I couldn't think of a better place to have been found than on Kimmie's blog as she is dear to me heart! There was a supplement blend that I had been trying that had black cohash in it. Honestly, sometimes it's hard to figure out exactly what part is working and what part isn't, if that makes any sense? Right now I'm in a :::whispering::: better stretch and honestly I've been slack on everything that I had been doing, so who really knows?! LOL!

Looking forward to getting to know you!

Blessings,
Tammy ~@~

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