Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Sleep and Seminar

I can't sleep!  I haven't slept all night in over a week.  I generally wake up between 2:30 and 3:30 and rarely go back to sleep.  It is driving me crazy!!!  I've always been a light sleeper.  Most little noises wake me up during the night.  This is different though.  There doesn't seem to be anything that wakes me up.  I just wake up and then cannot go back to sleep.  I toss and turn and try to get comfortable again.  I turn on my sound machine i.Phone app.  I try everything.  This morning I even downloaded a meditation/sleep file from i.Tunes.  The guy doing the talking has a very soothing voice, but it just didn't help.  I have been really good about not taking a nap when I get home from work and believe me, I have certainly wanted to!  I know that will only make it worse though.  I am feeling like a big time grump and I hate it.  So I ask you, what can I do?  If you have any sleep issues and found something that worked, please share them with me.  Or if you just have a suggestion, share that too!

I also wanted to update on our AES (Adoption Education Seminar).  It was really great!  There were a lot of things that I already knew from all the research I've done.  We talked about a lot of good topics though.  We spent quite a bit of time on Open Adoption.  There was discussion about what scares us about that, how the birth families feel when they make an adoption plan and allow someone else to take their baby home from the hospital.  I'm not gonna lie...I was crying!  It really is emotional when you think about it.  I mean, here is this woman/family who wants her child to have a really great life and is going to trust me to give her child what she feels she can't.  It is a gift I can never be worthy of and can never be thankful enough for. 

Something that was really helpful to me was discussing the role the birth family will have in our lives.  It looks different for every family and of course it can change over time.  It is something we'll discuss with the birth family in the match meetings and decide what we are both comfortable with.  I know it can be scary, but I also know that a child can never have too much love so I just continue to pray.  I pray for God to allow me to feel secure even when I'm scared.  Because even though we won't be co-parenting, there will always be another woman out there who is the birth mother of my child.  I will never be the birth mother, just like she will never be the mother fulfilling the day to day needs my child will get from me.  It's something that is totally new to me so of course it's scary, but I know it is something I can do. 

There was also a lot of discussion about transracial adoption.  Our agency does a lot of transracial adoptions.  I think so many do now because there is just such a need for it.  They don't pressure anyone into it because it really is a personal decision.  We spent a lot of time discussing what kinds of changes some people make after they adopt a child of a different race.  What is best for the child as far as support?  Where you can find resources to help with any issues that may come up?  How is parenting a child of another race different?  I know a lot of people like to believe that it really isn't any different and I think in many ways, it's not.  You love your child no matter what.  But, there are differences.  Unfortunately, we live in a world with cruel people and those people aren't just cruel about race.  We live in a world where people are not as accepting of differences as they should be.  People say mean and stupid things all the time.  It's important to have a plan of how you will handle these types of situations when they arise, because be assured, they will arise.  It's also important to know when you will react and when you will ignore.  What you will say to your child.  How you will let him/her know that it's ok if they ignore people, but it's also ok if they say something.  It's something to spend a lot of time planning for and of course thinking and praying about. 

I think the most important thing I gained from this seminar was just that I need to educate myself.  I don't ever want my child to feel like an outsider because he/she is adopted.  I want him/her to see other families that are like ours.  Whatever our family looks like and how our family is made doesn't matter to me as much as it will matter to outsiders.  I need to make sure that my actions and my words always tell my child that I am proud of how he/she came to us.  That adoption is the best thing that's ever happened to me.


barbie said...

It sounds like a wonderful seminar!

about sleep. have you ever had your adrenals tested? see symptoms here:


they also have info on how to test them...


you want the last test kit."Canary Club Diurnal Cortisol 4x "

Anonymous said...

It sounds like your seminar was just what you needed to answer your questions and bring answers to questions you didn't even know you had yet. I hope this path works out for you.

When I have a hard time sleeping I pull out a sudoko or crossword puzzle and just work the puzzles until my brain shuts down. It usually works!

Deni said...

Great info from the seminar, I've read a lot about all of those issues too, and like you said, while we wish they weren't issues, and we could just ignore them, that's just not responsible (or really possible). Praying for discernment for you and guidance in the choices that you two are making and praying for your baby, as I know God has the perfect one for you!!!

Sam said...

I feel your pain, sister. As I write this, I'm keeling over from two nights of 3 a.m. wake-ups, unable to sleep again...I'm draggin' today. :) I hope you get some sleep soon, and thanks for telling me about the meditation app! :) You know I share your need for white noise. ;)

Also, I think you are very, very wise. I'm so impressed with how much perspective you have already.

Faith said...

It's it all so overwhelming some days?! It's like, you want to know ALL there is about adoption, but then when you know, you almost wish you could be blissfully ignorant:). Of course, we know that knowledge is power and it will make us better adoptive mommies. It's still hard. Way to put it on the table and start discussing it, though!

Cape Girl said...

I totally hear you about the sleep! The same exact thing happens to, about the same time, too. I brought it up at the doctor's last visit and she said it's a symptom of depression and/or anxiety. The only thing that seems to work for me is doing a relaxation of my body, concentrating on every part and relaxing it. Sometimes though, I'm up for hours. I hope it gets better for you!

It sounds like the seminar was great.

Saige said...

In answer to the sleep question, I am a huge fan of Am.bien. I take it for a couple of weeks, and then try to wean myself off. Another thing to try if you don't want prescription sleep pills is melatonin. I've been taking that for a while now and it seems to help. One other thing you can try is a technique I read in a magazine once. You envision yourself putting gold letters up on a black velvet back ground starting with 100 and counting down. So you put up 1-0-0, you take it down, you put up 9-9, you take it down, and so on. I usually fall alseep before I hit 70. Sometimes I change it up and write the numbers on a chalk board, or paint them on paper.

The best thing I ever heard from an adopted friend of mine was that she used to tell her non-adopted siblings, "Mom and dad WANTED me, YOU just came along." Basically she was telling them that she was hand picked, cream of the crop, the best of the best. Her adopted parents always made her feel like she was part of the family, and that they loved her every bit as much as their biological children. She turned out to be an awesome woman.

~Rachel~ said...

Oh girl I feel your pain with the insomnia! I am 100% guilty of racing thoughts affecting my sleep. For me it helps to know that others have the same problem and I am not the only one wide awake at 3 am driving myself crazy. Usually when I surrender to my insomnia I end up actually getting a good night’s sleep. I accept the fact that I may wake up at 3 am and that I will have to deal with that. I set a book next to my bed in preparation. When I stop stressing about the possibility of waking up so early I tend to sleep through the night. I also pray about it…giving it to God takes a lot of the uneasiness away.
Anyway, I hope a great night’s sleep is just around the corner for you…I know it is! Report back to your blogger friends! =)

Becky said...

So sorry to hear about your sleep troubles. Could it be related to allergies? I have heard that allergies can sometimes be a cause of insomnia. I would also guess that you are under extra stress right now with all the decisions to be made. I recall having some trouble sleeping when we were first starting out with our adoption process. I think it was part excitement and part worry.

It sounds like your adoption seminar was wonderful and very informative. I have learned so much since starting this process and yet I feel I still have so much to learn. I don't want to be one of those parents that buries their head in the sand and ignores the real issues that are there with adoption, thinking that love will be enough.

I think you are going to be a wonderful mom! I am so excited for you!

Anonymous said...

I've had plenty of sleepless nights in the past year and the only thing that helped in the begining was Advil or Tyleno PM but now they do not work.

In the begining I would get back up and watch TV instead of laying there trying to sleep. That worked some of the time and made me sleepy.

When you have peace about the adoption you will sleep! I hope all goes smoothly for you!

Stacey said...

Sounds like the seminar was very educational! I'm glad you were able to attend.

And I'm sorry about the sleeplessness. I'm a pretty light sleeper, too. It stinks! Hope you get some good winks in soon. Reading usually helps me unwind, but not if the book is really exciting! :)

Kelli said...

What a great seminar! You've got me thinking about all kinds of things! I'm so glad you are feeling God's guidance and are excited about the future.

Sorry about the insomnia - I don't have any answers, but I'll say a prayer!

Angela said...

I'm so excited for you...that things are moving! I know that God will direct your paths to the child that is meant to be yours! The classes and seminars are scary at times. We cried after several and thought...we can't do that. But God said "Yes, You can!" Here's my email is you want to chat more. I know every situation is so different, but sometimes it helps to know someone's been there. We could chat more about kiddos of a different race as well. God bless and many HUGS! bkmomang@aol.com

Katie said...

You have made me cry! I remember all of those feelings, questions and fears I had before we adopted our daughter. It is an amazing and scary journey all wrapped into one! Our daughter is the most wonderful person and I feel so blessed to have her in my life!

I had MAJOR problems sleeping when we were going through the adoption process. I have two friends who have adopted who had the same issue. A few weeks after we were approved, I started sleeping better. For me, I think it was stress and time was the only thing that made it better.

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