“Chronically Sleep-Deprived” is a label all parents claim. Especially parents of young kids. Especially mothers who breastfeed and co-sleep. When my husband is out of town, my mornings are exercises of me battling a need to “sit” and wake up all while changing diapers, outfits, making breakfasts, breaking up fights between the two older kids. I am a night owl by nature and have raised three early-morning-worm-eaters.
I like a lazy morning. These do not exist at this house.
In turn, I also like a lazy evening. My kids go to bed early, usually by 7:30, so I have a few luxurious hours to myself to binge watch the TV shows of my choosing (just finished season two of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, now onto season two of Mr. Robot). I usually have baby H in my arms, or by my side, and that need of “just one more episode” makes it so I’m not in bed until 10:30 or so….
And then, I have a crazy goal this year of reading 101 books. I know I can do it, I’m currently reading books number 14 and 15, but this goal requires some serious pre-sleep reading. And Husband calls me around this time, so by best estimates, I’m asleep around 11 every night.
Last night H decided to fully wake up, cooing and laughing, around 11:15, and then didn’t settle down until 1 or so. I let him sing to himself as I tried to slumber, but last night he wasn’t having it. We have the Arm’s Reach Co-Sleeper attached to our bed, and, usually, he’s totally fine in there, but last night the kid wanted to lay in my arms. Now that he’s a pretty solid 5-month old I’m a little more at ease with him actually in my bed, but I don’t want to start each night off that way.
So last night it was a half-asleep parody dance of picking him up out of the co-sleeper, settling him down in my arms, then putting him back down in his own space only to have to repeat it five minutes later. I finally just gave up and H won the battle. The little stinker snuggled into me and I tried to find that happy medium of sleeping next to him with a blanket and pillow all while not having the blanket and pillow anywhere near his face (which is tricky).
Fast-forward to 6 am, the 6-year-old crawling into bed with me, and his every ten minutes or so plead to me to “wake up”. I eventually tell him to “get himself Cheerios” around 7 am and I follow him out of bed around 7:30.
I wish I could bounce out of bed with a halo of birds singing around my head, smiling and calm and cook these impossibly healthy breakfasts for the kids (that they actually eat) but this is not possible, like, ever. I wish I could responsibly turn in for the night at the same time each night, knowing full well the demands of early morning parenting, but apparently, this is not a possibility either.
So I’ll continue this hazy, distracted, grumpy, tired version of ‘mommying’, at least today. Perhaps tonight I’ll turn a page tonight and learn my lesson and go to sleep earlier, but with a full queue of Mr. Robot to watch, I’m sure I’ll skirt responsibility once again. Some lessons are never learned.