I think Petunia is trying to kill me. Or at least, I can't rule that out. Her sleep has gone to hell right at a time when I am trying to get up to speed on a new project at work. It is a high profile project, and a bit political. A lot of people are depending on me to get this right, so it would be nice if I were getting more than 5 hours of broken sleep at night.
But I'm not. Petunia's still getting over the cold that coincided with the ear infection. If her congestion is doing anything similar to what mine is doing, she probably feels like her face might pop off. Plus, she's getting at least one new tooth in, possibly two. And she's hit separation anxiety a tad early, and finds it very distressing when I leave the room. (Incidentally, this phase is much less annoying the second time around- maybe because I know it ends? This time, I find the little crinkled up face and earnest tears of distress sort of cute, and I mostly want to rush back, pick Petunia up and give her hugs and kisses.)
Given all of that, it is not surprising that her sleep is not as good as it could be. It is still better than Pumpkin's was at this age- Petunia is only up 3 times a night. Pumpkin was up 5 times. The really annoying thing is that Petunia is hard to get back down after the second and third wakings and has been waking up early and in a foul mood. This morning, I took her for a walk at 5:30 because I was afraid her screaming would wake Pumpkin.
Making matters even worse is the feeling I have of a missed opportunity. My mom was here last week, helping out while Hubby was on a business trip. We had planned for her to spend some time holding Petunia in the middle of the night, to try to gently wean her off one of her (at the time) two night feedings. I had high hopes of having improved sleep. I think having those hopes dashed, and knowing that I have a good month or two (at least!) before the separation anxiety improves and I can really try again to improve things, has made the current sleep situation even harder to take.
Still, I have recently been reflecting on Pumpkin's sleep history, and feeling pretty good about how it all turned out. Pumpkin's sleep issues were hard to handle at times. OK, they were hard to handle most of time time. But we tried to do what we thought she needed, and to keep to our parenting philosophy, and here we are, with a three year old who goes to sleep on her own and has been sleeping through the night for over a year. I want to feel just as good when I look back at how Petunia learned to sleep through the night (or relearned, since we had a short period in which she slept through the night when she was about 2.5 months old). So I guess I'll just suck it up, dust off my skills for coping with sleep deprivation, and remember that this phase seems far, far longer when you're in the midst of it than it seems from the other side.