i haven't been sleeping well, and neither has milo. i've been convinced for awhile now that he hasn't been getting enough sleep, and even though the idea was out there that maybe he just doesn't need as much sleep, i think last night went to show that he does need more sleep:
last night, at around midnight, a huge thunderstorm started rolling in, i mean HUGE. i kid you not, the house was shaking and the windows were rattling; i was convinced that the angels had decided to place all their bowling pins on the lane above our house, and were just chucking their bowling balls all down that same lane, all at the same time. (it is angels bowling, right?)
milo slept through the whole thing.
i've been trying something new, though, the past couple of days. frustrated and tired at both our inability to sleep (his during the day, mine at night), out of desperation, i decided to bring back the bottle right before nap-time. i decided i was going to help him wind down. i decided i wasn't going to let him cry it out, because that just wasn't working anymore. he would only get more frustrated and more upset and that wasn't helping him calm down to take a nap.
ben also helped me realize the importance of as quickly as possible, darting out of the room as soon as we lay milo down and he's out of our hands. like super sneaky black belt ninja - HI-YAH! (but quietly.... hi-yah).
lastly, i decided i was going to let him be over-tired, but not let him get cranky by playing with him and distracting him when he's getting into stuff he shouldn't and letting him chase the cat around the house because he finds it hilarious (even though she's now terrified of him - you can see it in her eyes, poor cat), and i'm learning to control my own emotions so that even if he's cranky, and even if i've gotten no sleep, i decided i wouldn't get frustrated with him, because that was only adding to the crank-o-meter of the household, and that wasn't doing any of us any good.
in all of this, i feel like i have finally found the schedule/routine i was in need of, with the flexibility that everyone has been telling me was necessary:
he wakes up, i give him a little bit of bottle for a snack, i let him play. i try to get him to eat some solids, i play with him some more. then, usually at about two to two and a half hours after he woke up, he starts getting the droopy eye, so i go into his bedroom and put up the airline blankets that we're using to help block out more of the light. then i make him a bottle, and we sit on the couch, and as mister rogers - cool, calm and collectedly - as i can, i explain to him while he's eating that we're going to wind down and it's time for a nap. then we go into his bedroom, i read him a book, i sing the twinkle song, he starts rubbing his eyes, and i know i'm winning. i put him down, i ninja out of there, and he hums a little bit and goes to sleep. then we repeat the process. twice more, once for the second nap of the day, about 4 hours later, and lastly for bedtime, shooting for 7:30 tonight, since he couldn't even make it to 8 pm last night.
he still wakes up earlier than i would like, although today he managed to make it till 6, but he sleeps through the night, and he's generally happy, even if his eyelids are drooping down to his knees, so i can't complain.