When Elijah was born we rejoiced at having an infant who slept as much as the books say newborns are meant to sleep—he might have even been on the high end of the average that first week or two. I definitely had the sense that he was making up for Harvey, our 12-hour-maximum sleeper. (In case you're not familiar with them, I'll let you know that it's hard to have a newborn awake for 12 hours a day; besides sleeping they pretty much only eat—which is naturally limited in duration—and cry. So I felt like we'd earned an easy one.)
Only, as he hit two weeks or so, the dark side of LyeLye's love for sleep emerged. He could sleep for 16 to 18 hours a day, yes; but if he didn't get that much sleep he became less and less happy. And even worse, he's a light sleeper. Since peace and quiet is in short supply in our household he started to build up a sleep debt, which made him fussy, and his fussiness in turn prevented him from settling down to sleep. So the problem compounded itself, and there were moments when we were close to despair.
But happily things have started to look up again the last week. We realized how much sleep the little guy really needs, and made more of an effort to get him those hours. We also made sure to give him plenty of calm-down time in the evenings, which has meant that he's been able to sleep for longer periods over the first part of the night. Oh how we enjoy the three hours—dare we hope for four?!—of uninterrupted sleep the first part of the night; or, of course, of the unencumbered time to get some housework done!
Well-slept, Elijah is the soul of compliance for much of the day. This afternoon, for example, he sat happily in the bouncy seat for what must have been an hour as we stuffed plastic eggs for the big Easter party next weekend. And he's happy on walks in the sling or Bjorn, and rarely complains in the car. Of course, he still tends to get fussy evenings, and he's still an infant—mostly one of us is carrying him, which tends to slow things down. Don't think we have it too easy! (at least, don't think Leah has it too easy: she does all the work). But he is sleeping some. Like a baby.