Monday, November 10, 2008

Getting Giggles, Take 2

Way back in August I posted how Joy had a reputation at daycare for getting giggles.

We've just found a new context, with a zombie-parents twist.

Joy's difficulties in getting to sleep are continuing, particularly at home. She is managing to nap some at daycare, whether due to peer pressure or her Peapod Plus travel bed or her borrowed weighted blanket (top priority for this week - chasing down our OT to give a weight-recommendation so we can obtain such a blanket for home too).

I almost thought I was seeing a pattern where the few nights she was sleeping through were happening after those daycare naps. That pattern broke with a crash on Friday night, though, after a deep 2-hour daycare nap. That night she almost didn't let the melatonin put her to sleep at bedtime, then woke up at 12:30. I thought I'd try something different, and took her to attempt co-sleeping in the guestroom. She didn't do more than drowse the rest of the night (though at least she was fairly quiet), and I didn't want to take her back to the crib to hoot & holler until JoyDad was up for the day, because that would killed the rest of the night for BOTH of us.

Anyway. We decided to try cutting out naps altogether for the weekend. Not that she'd been actually napping at home for quite a while, but at least we'd been putting her in the tented crib for "quiet time" for a chunk of the afternoon.

Saturday, after playing outside in fallen leaves instead of napping, Joy got very snoozly and almost fell asleep on the floor in the late afternoon, but perked up some after dinner. Then as bedtime approached, she started getting giggly. Wild, over-the-top giggles. At first it made us laugh too, until it was clear that quiet lullabies and rocking and even the melatonin weren't causing the giggles to stop. So we just put her to bed, where she giggled and thrashed for about 5 minutes before crashing into sleep.

Slept all night, it was very very nice!

Tried it again on Sunday. I realized that I'd heard those giggles recently before. They had happened when she'd awakened at 2:30 or 3am on previous nights, and had been vocalizing for 2 or 3 hours -- the vocalizations would change to those wild giggles. Overtired, perhaps?

Joy's church volunteers reported that she was quiet, tired, low-energy all evening. It wasn't until we got her home and started getting ready for bed... that the wild giggles began again.

This time they didn't stop when she went into the crib. It took something like an hour and a half to crazy-giggle herself to sleep, which wound her parents up enough to push their sleep even later than that. But at least she slept through, which was something.

The saga continues! Tee hee hee hee! MuuuuAH-HA-HA-HA! Zzzzzzzz....


" JUST US " said...

Your Joy sounds just like My William. He got the giggles at school on thursday and a few minutes later he fell asleep During Circle time. Gotta love them.

Anonymous said...

kendall does the same thing! she laughs and squeals and laughs some more before she falls asleep. i'd kill to know what's so damn funny!

although this wasn't sleep related, i wrote a post about the laughter some time ago .. thought you might get a chuckle out of it (sorry, that was bad)

JoyMama said...

Oh Jess. Amazing quote from your post:
"For heaven’s sake, why would anyone want to ‘cure’ spontaneous bouts of joy?"

When Joy goes over-the-top with daytime giggles, we can usually tell what's tickling her funny bone, and I wouldn't "cure" her laughter for the world. Sleep deprivation, on the other hand, gives the "why" a whole 'nother twist. Alas!

Niksmom said...

Ok, so ignore my comment on the other post about borrowing the weighted blanket. :-p

Nik does something similar while we're getting him ready for bed; he gets extremely slap-happy and then conks within 5 min of being put in bed. I'm starting to observe that, for Nik, it's a part of his learning process in regulating himself. It's like he gets SO wound up he can't help it and has to let it out somehow; then he settles after a little bit.

Have you tried brushing or joint compressions before bed? That used to help Nik.

Anonymous said...

o.k., i almost hesitate to write this b/c i once suggested it to another mom who subsequently looked at me like i had 3 heads. but here goes. does Joy eat a lot of bananas or other foods high in phenols such as apples or grapes? i've heard that sometimes kids on the spectrum are known to get extra giggly at night when they've had large quantities of phenolic foods. rhema went through a phase when she was eating 2-3 bananas a day and then laughing her head off all night long. we dropped her to 1 banana and thing seemed to improve. who knows? call me crazy.

JoyMama said...

Niksmom -- Thanks for the thought about the brushing/joint compressions. I wish the laughter was just blowing off a little steam for 5 minutes, instead of going for hours! Sigh. I did have that OT conversation, though, and put in an order for a weighted blanket that's actually in stock, so we should have it within the week...

Rhemashope -- three heads? I thought you were a twin, not a triplet, LOL! Seriously, what a fascinating thought -- exactly the kind of thing I hope to shake out of the collective brain trust when I put our problems out on the blog! I've actually kind of backed off bananas & apples lately, because Joy's had a constipation issue for the last few weeks. For a while we thought the constipation was exacerbating the waking, but the one has improved and the other hasn't.


datri said...

I love weird spontaneous giggles. Kayla's teachers are always saying she always seems to just crack herself up.

Right now she thinks her sister cleaning up the toys before bed is hysterical. She went into a laughing fit and even said "HA! HA!" very loudly.

The sleep thing is annoying, though. Kayla's back to doing the 2AM thing again. I take her to the living room to play and doze on the couch. At least that way she won't wake up the rest of the house with her weird noises.

Hope you get the sleep issues resolved with Joy. I read somewhere that living with a child with autism who doesn't sleep is like being in a state of continual jet lag. Yawn.