Thursday, March 5, 2009

War Zones and Hunger Strikes

Do you ever feel like you're caught in a war zone? That's how I feel after the last several weeks, but especially the last few days. It has been a battle to get my son to sleep lately. That is nothing unusual for us. We have battled sleep since the day he was born. He wasn't one of those babies who would eat and go back to sleep. A full night's sleep for him was 3 hours and a nap was 30 minutes. I have learned over the past year that I don't function at all on 4 hours of sleep, and anything less than 6 hours is difficult, especially when those 6 are spread out into increments of 2 hours each.

And to make the war even more interesting, my sweet Snugglebug, who typically eats anything I put in front of him, went on a hunger strike yesterday. It was my husband's first double shift after having been home everyday for two weeks. He had returned to work on Monday with just his regular shift, so he was home in the morning. And, today was my husband's weekend, so he was off all day and home with us.

The only reason I say Snugglebug had a hungerstrike was that he refused to eat lunch, snack, and dinner last night. When he got up this morning, he refused his cereal.

That is until my husband entered the room. Hubby had taken a shower while I was preparing breakfast, so Snugglebug hadn't seen him. When my husband picked up the spoon, Snugglebug's mouth was open wide. Not only did Snugglebug eat, but he ate voraciously downing his entire bowl of cereal. He had a few bites left when my husband left to take the car to the shop. And Snugglebug once again buried his head in his arm and refused to eat.

So, I did all I knew to do. I put the bowl away, and loaded Snugglebug into the car. The plan was to pick up my husband and enjoy a rare breakfast at IHOP which is exactly what we did. We ordered our favorites and Snugglebug tasted pancakes for the first time. He ate about half a pancake, and he downed almost half a jar of Gerber breakfast food. As long as my husband fed him, he was perfectly happy. This trend continued the entire day. I tried to feed him lunch and, no, he wouldn't have any of it. Same with snack and dinner. The hunger strike continued as long as I was the one loading the spoon, and ended when my husband took over.

Tomorrow, my husband works the second double-shift of his week, so we won't see him the entire day. He'll leave at 7 am and return aroun 11 pm. It is a long day for him and for us. But, it is necessary not because we have a high standard of living, but because our health insurance rises each year and his salary does not. It is necessary for him to work 16 extra hours per week so my son can have his eye surgery and visit the opthalmalogist monthly. But, how do you explain that to a one-year old? How do you tell a one-year old who misses his daddy so much that he skips dinner that Daddy has no choice? I think it would be easier to convince the city that the police need a raise than it would be to convince a one-year old that he needs health insurance.

1 comment:

liz said...

Cynda, I feel your frustration. You and Michael are terrific parents, and Gabriel is so lucky to have you as a stay at home mom (instead of in daycare being cared for by someone else). My Mom and Dad went without regularly when I was little so that Mom could stay at home with us until we started elementary school. I didn't realize the sacrifices made until I was older.
On the flip side, isn't it sweet how much Gabriel loves his Daddy, and this is just one way he is showing what he feels (since he can't talk yet).
Have a great day!