Tired

“Tired?” Arnauld asked as I walked into the kitchen.

“Why do you ask?” Thinking maybe he noticed that I had just been rubbing at my eyes in the other room.

“You always say it…took a chance,” he said. It felt like a dig. Most days, by the time we actually connect at the end of the day, I have hit my wall  and I’m heading to bed…before 9pm.

Why am I always so tired? Let’s take a look at last night as a case study…

Somewhere between 10 and 11, I hear Adi whimper on two separate occasions. I wait, anticipating her cries ramping up and having to go up to settler her. She has a cough and her sleep has been rocky for the past few nights. Thankfully, she quiets herself down. Yet, I still lay awake listening for more.

12:39am I am awoken by cries. I listen trying to determine the voice I am hearing. “I want out!” I hear Rose crying over and over again from her crib, followed by stomping. I wait a moment, adjusting to being jolted from sleep. Her cries continue and I go up to get her. Instead of sitting with her, I carry her to our bed. Within minutes Arnauld is telling her to stop kicking him. “She just wants to know you’re there,” I justify. “She’s just being sweet.” I hold her hand, an invitation for her to pat me and rub my arm…I drift off to a semi sleep only to be awoken by more petting. She isn’t going to sleep. “Let’s go back to your bed,” I say.

Rose knows the drill. She gets really still, trying to persuade me to let her stay. “Night night.”

1:15am After about three more rounds of this, I get firm and say, “Let’s go to your bed.” I sit up to show I mean business.

“I pooped,” Rose says.
“Did you really?” I ask grabbing a diaper and wipes. As I change her, I give her another lesson in pee vs. poop. Then I carry her back to bed. “I love you,” I tell her as I tiptoe out. I know that she nods in response. She always does.

1:25am I am back in bed. I pray for no more interruptions. Those morning hours of sleep go fast.

1:55am Adi is crying again. Arnauld says, “Just let her cry.” I know that these cries are different and will only escalate.

“Her blankets probably fell off,” I say as I head back upstairs.

When I get to to the top of the stairs, I call out into the dark, “What’s wrong, Adi? Did your blankets fall?”

“No. I just want you to lay with me,” she says as I watch her cozy back into her blankets. I climb into bed with Wren, shoving her all of a sudden long limbs to one side. Adi’s version of laying with her means I lay in Wren’s bed…I mentally decide that I will just spend the rest of the night here instead of being woken up again. At least from here, I can mutter reassurances. “You’re ok, just go back to sleep.”

3:39am I wake to kicks. When laying with children, why do they feel the need to bury their feet into your sides? I shove Wren over again, apologizing for taking over her bed.

5:00am The house is quiet. Everyone is sound asleep. It is time to get up. I move carefully, to avoid waking any of the sleeping children. They need their rest.

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12 thoughts on “Tired

  1. You every reason to be tired! My mother told me when I was pregnant with Hannah, “Once you have kids, you never sleep the same again.” Boy was she right! Amazingly, you never come across tired! Your case study is one many can relate to! Thanks for sharing!

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  2. Gosh, I wonder why you’re tired?! This slice tells the story of many nights in our household, many. This line: “When laying with children, why do they feel the need to bury their feet into your sides?” I have been wondering that for nine years now! Reading this somehow makes me feel less alone in this uncharted, hardly civilized world of parenting. All we can do is keep going!

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  3. Well that explains it all! I was brought back to those days when the kids were little and restless sleep was a pipe dream. It does get better! Somehow I sense you do still find the joy.

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  4. No wonder you’re tired! Yet, you still posted and still responded to others. Motherhood can be an exercise in management. I remember those long nights with short sleep and trying to capture 40 winks in between duty calls.

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  5. Tired? I am exhausted reading your Slice. It brought back those memories when I, too, was where you are now. I miss so much of those days, but missing much needed sleep is not one of those things. It does get better, but the sleepless nights become different as the kids age. Parenting is the hardest job on the planet, but it is also the most rewarding one too.

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  6. Oh how this slice takes me back to the nights of constant waking and half sleeping. And the kicking – why must they kick us? Does it help to know your not alone? Probably not much. Does it help to know it gets better? Probably not in the moment. At any rate, both things are true & no wonder you are tired! May you make it to the weekend and may you get a nap!

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  7. I would say that you deserve to be tired! This line is the most tragic and memorable for me:
    5:00am The house is quiet. Everyone is sound asleep. It is time to get up. I move carefully, to avoid waking any of the sleeping children. They need their rest.
    It reminds me of a long airplane flight we took when Sarah was very little. She cried for five hours and then fell asleep just as we were landing!

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    1. The last time I flew, I went to see my sister on my own with Wren and Adi. Adi was a mess the entire flight… but fell asleep right at the end. I had forgotten about that!

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  8. OMG Those are tiring days. I’ve repressed them, but your post just brought some of them back. Even when you’re describing the wee hours of the morning, your love shines through your writing, though. I always say you capture the interactions, but you really, really do. Hope you’re sleeping now…

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