Sleep when the baby sleeps. This was drilled into my head since pretty much the beginning of my pregnancy. Whenever the baby naps or seems to go down for the night, you sleep as well. Is it effective? Yeah, probably about 80% of the time. I had a pretty difficult labor with a 4th degree tear and some anemia due to the large amounts of blood that I lost during labor and delivery. It’s hard to come home from that and then have visitors who are dying to see your new mommy skills and all you want to do is rest and sleep and recover! Socializing was the last thing on my mind (I know, I’m horrible) and those first two weeks, I indeed followed the golden rule of sleeping when Dilan slept. It was quite easy too since he slept all the time back then!
Fast forward a few weeks and I’m not so much following the golden rule anymore. Has Dilan become easier to handle? A little bit, yes. I’m also able to handle the sleep deprivation a bit better, but more than anything else, I often don’t nap when he does because I simply want to get something DONE. I live and breathe for getting things organized and I don’t do well unless I accomplish something every day. SOMETHING. ANYTHING. So my take on this is that it’s ok to skip a nap because you just want your kitchen counter to be clean, laundry not to pile up, or dinner to be done before the hubs comes home. It gives you the tiniest sense of accomplishment and if you’re breastfeeding and saving a stash of milk for later, a chance to pump in peace! All the baby blogs you’ll ever read will tell you not to sweat the small stuff and the mess around the house. I say, sometimes it’s cleaning up these little things that help you feel best and like a normal person again. If organizing isn’t your thing, you could always take the time to do something nice for yourself (like shower or meditate!). Talk to me in a few weeks when I go back to work and I’ll probably be begging for that nap. Or if you do decide to skip a nap, you can always pick up on my favorite breastfeeding mantra instead: “eat when the baby eats”. One handed, of course 😉