Mt. Laundry

Gathering my thoughts… from under the sofa… amongst the pile of toys… hiking the small mountain of laundry…

At work, my mind goes blank, blink, blink. I told my boss I haven’t slept in months and he’s pretty easygoing about it.

I had a little intro text to update on a website, exactly the kind of task I would’ve loved using an excessive amount of time to over-analyze.

But now… instead of my own thoughts, I hear the girl in the nearby desk talk. In a loud voice. All day.

It’s not her fault. My sleep-deprived baby brain has gone empty. Where did all the thoughts go? Hello, please come back! I miss you!

Without thoughts, my mind and body have taken on a zombie-like existence. I go from place to place, I’m not late, I keep up with my calendar. But in the evenings, I no longer remember what I did in the morning. I have lost all sense of time, memory, details. I have trouble understanding words that I’m reading. I can barely process any new information.

So finally, a week ago on Monday, Mr Hubby and I decided this has to end. We gritted our teeth and decided to try the feared, the notorious Sleep Training method for toddlers… the one where you let them cry without picking them up until they fall asleep by themselves.

Yes, heartbreaking. But necessary.

Wondering how it would work on twins – would they be able to fall asleep with the other one screaming in their ear, would they fall into separate rhythms, the ultimate nightmare of all twin parents? – we gave it a go.

The first night, they cried for 1-2 hours. My ears almost exploded.

The second night, the first one gave up in 5 minutes (!!!) and the second one only cried for 25 min.

After that, no tears! I now tell them to go to sleep, and they put their heads on their pillows and start to sleep. Utterly incredible!

But that still doesn’t mean I get to sleep. Along with my poor little toddlers and Hubby, I keep getting the flu – over and over again. Almost two months of nighttime coughing and I’ve pretty much had it by now. But no matter what I try, the flu isn’t going anywhere. The zombie hijacking my brain is enjoying itself.

It could be worse. At least there are Christmas lights everywhere.

My little boys hug each other and stroke each other’s hair in such a sweet way. One of them was feeding the other one today, with great care. They surprise me with new skills they must’ve picked up at daycare, like rolling up their sleeves and pointing to the kitchen tap because they want to wash their hands.

Time flies, and it stands still. Moments exist in snapshots, separate from the timeframe they jumped out of. Even if I don’t remember what I mean by “recently”, I remember the events. That’s all I need.

The photos are from Helsinki during the past x weeks (I have lost sense of time, but they are pretty recent! Close enough!)

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69 responses to “Mt. Laundry

  1. Hoorah for you and the ‘Sleep, Babies, sleep’ training!! That is HUGE. Now, to get you back in your right mind and body: Tons of Vitamin C and water (X the coffee – it doesn’t count as water or food) all day; Sleep slightly sitting up; Say prayers of thanks for the good things that happened that day as you’re drifting off to dreamland. Even if you can’t remember a thing, just keep saying “Thank you for…Thank you for…” Before you know it, morning will be upon you and you’ll feel fresh and rested. Ha! Sounds like an advertisement for heavy drugs, I know. But it works. I’m old. I’ve tried a few things. X 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Super news on the kids sleeping – this is a huge lifesaver and though it seems cruel, it is the very best thing for both them and you! At the risk of sounding like a wicked witch, I did this when my babies were fairly young, and they adapted in no time. As for the flu … well, I have no great ideas, but I sure hope it goes away soon and that you’ve had all of this year’s strains already and none will come back to bite you again!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Lexi!! Our boys slept so well their first year, we didn’t need to do anything about it. Then they suddenly stopped sleeping by themselves a bit after they turned one. We were waiting for the perfect moment to start sleep training, ideally we wouldn’t have done it a mere week after they started daycare! But the perfect moment was elusive… I’m so happy it worked anyway!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Ooh, you took me back a ways 🙂 I’m happy to tell you there’s light at the end of the tunnel, and soon!
    Mom brain is real, and sleep is the answer. Sleep training was HARD, so kudos to you.
    I love the way you used ‘snaphots’ — that’s how I see my kids in the time frame of the early years, ‘snapshots’ — all in my head and available at any time. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • You’re lucky to still have those snapshots in your head 🙂 I hope I’ll still have them later on, too… I have a feeling my foggy mind won’t recall every detail as much as I’d want… but we’ll see! And thanks for letting me know there’s light at the end of the tunnel!! 🙂

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  4. I certainly don’t have two little ones but sometimes I feel like a zombie as well. I feel like I’ve been constantly sick since I moved to China. I guess I’m not used to this pollution yet!
    I hope the babies are sleeping the whole night through soon! You deserve some rest!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Arielle! 🙂 I bet pollution really can cause all sorts of illness and allergies. I was once allergic to a mold-filled apartment I had for a while in Paris and it was absolutely exhausting. I can only imagine pollution must be the same: you can’t run away from it, you breathe it in, constantly. How long are you planning on staying there? Where next?

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  5. How lovely that your twins are so good at helping each other and it’s so nice that they are now sleeping through the night, so much better for all of you. I hope your cough goes soon, my elder son has had one for a few weeks too, and almost lost his voice – hope you shake it off soon.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Firstly, I have a photo of the same building in Helsinki!! The red one with the grey concrete around the door. I became a bit obsessed with the architecture and I took heaps of photos when I walked around that city. Secondly, you are doing so well to get them to sleep the second night. It didn’t work out that well for me when I tried it, but my kids as adults still have trouble getting to sleep!!
    Thirdly: I suffered with flu, pneumonia and Asthma after the birth of my second. I also advocate vitamin c ++
    I found 500 -1000mg daily worked. I think the tablets are smaller in dose overseas. I could only get 250 mg in Sweden!! Natural sources of vit C are better. Also get your lungs checked in case of undertreated respiratory condition like asthma. I have not been as sick as that time in my life. I think your immunity suffers when you don’t get enough sleep.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I remember when I left the hospital after my daughter was born, I add to go to the chemist’s to buy a few things. To register me, the lady behind the counter asked me a few basic questions. When she asked my address, I went blank. I hadn’t a clue!
    I hope you enter a new phase soon where everything gets easier.
    xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks dear! I’m sure it will get easier 🙂 Only five more months til spring starts! 😜hehee. Can’t wait for sunny days where we are all feeling fine and can do fun things! Last weekend we had to cancel a day trip I was so looking forward to… we were all ill.

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      • I can’t wait for Spring either. Winter seems to be harder to bear years after years!
        I’ve treated myself to a hammam session on Sunday. It helped my breathing a lot. I had the impression to have a blocked nose for weeks. Maybe you should try?
        Where were you supposed to go this weekend?

        Liked by 1 person

        • I don’t think hammams exist here, but there is Finnish sauna of course 🙂 I’m not a huge fan, the air is actually dry in a Finnish sauna so breathing is possibly even harder. A Turkish sauna might do good… anyway, I have to work all day so when would I have the time? 😂🤣 We were planning on going to a small town called Porvoo, I wanted to see their Christmas market. They only had the market for one weekend and now we missed it. (Why only one though? People aren’t very business-minded over here…)

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  8. You did good with the sleep training. heartbreaking but indispensable. You will recover. Sooner than you think. Flu and colds? Goes with the weather and toddlers. Did you get your flu shots?
    And the sleeve rolling? Pointing at the tap? That is so sweet. Remember I think I told you they would learn many things at the daycare.
    Cheers Lumi.
    (You will get better, no worry)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yep, the boys and I got flu shots, but it only works for certain influenza strains, the really bad ones. Not these simply annoying ones, apparently. 🤪
      And yep, you told me so! 🙂 And they have learned other cute things, too, like playing along when I sing certain songs, like itsy bitsy spider, they use their hands… or twinkle twinkle little star and the hands twinkle… 💕

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I resonate with your thoughts very much. It brought me memories of those sleepless nights. We tried the sleeping method once with my first child. I was sitting in the room next to the one where my daughter was screaming, my tears running. I gave up the attempt after 1 hour and never tried again. This means insufficient sleep for years as we have three children. Sufficient sleep is so important for a twin mother. Do take care. Sending my best wishes and hugs. 💜

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, it’s so sad to hear them cry like that, I can understand why you couldn’t go through it. And with 3 children, wow that’s a long time to hang on without proper rest. I guess with twins what made listening to their crying a tiny bit easier was that they often cry for a while without being consoled, since they always have to wait for their turn. Eg. I can only dress one boy at a time if I’m alone with them, and so on. So we are used to hearing crying that we can’t immediately react to. The difference here I guess was that we weren’t reacting on purpose, which felt especially bad… How old are your kids now? I’m sure you’ve mentioned it but I forget! 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Wow, I hope you recover soon from your flu!! I have friends with a toddler and since they leave the kid at kindergarten, they spend all weekends sick (flu, cold, or any other thing)… I guess the kids are getting immunized and the parents with them… I don’t envy this phase! Probably the flu and the lack of sleep explain all the rest, don’t they?

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Yikes. No sleep and never ending flu might be a dictionary definition of unhappiness. But it is just a phase. In no time at all they’ll be talking back and staying out all night and you can look back on this time with nostalgia!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Ohh, I missed this post! Could it be that it was not in the Reader?

    It’s so sweet how you describe them! ❤ I can just see them so tender with each other, so lovely. I'm glad you had success with this treatment, to me as a non-human mom it sounds sensible. Kind of like what you'd do with the dog.

    Not so good to hear about your no-thought mind. I guess it's fatigue, from dealing with the boys, from not sleeping, from the flu. It's good that you're functioning at all still! I wish to kick your symptoms in the chin and make them flee.

    From the sound of it it's getting better. At least you'll be able to sleep when you can breathe again! 😉

    I like your photos. Buildings seem to have faces and smirk approvingly at your camera. You still remember to click, that's good.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Who knows about the Reader! I always check that all my posts show up, and so did this one.
      I’ve been clicking away with my iPhone as I go about my business, so most of these are from the same area downtown. My camera is out of use, sadly… waiting for that lottery win to get a new one! (Clothing the boys is more important right now!)
      I still have the flu, a horrible cough that keeps me – and everyone else- up all night. I’m destroying rainforest with the amount of tissues I need… now the boys are coughing too 😳
      Thanks MM for being ever so cheery! Just what I need 😊😊😊😊

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Julie dear! ☺️ This flu is a persistent bugger and it keeps me awake all night coughing… a good reminder to really appreciate those moments when the whole family is healthy! 😊 Hope your enjoying the season – wish you a very Merry Xmas!! 🎄

      Liked by 1 person

  13. I’m glad to hear that the Sleep Training method worked. Exhaustion from lack of sleep is no joke!! I hope that you both are getting over the flu. The photos from around Helsinki are lovely! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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