They say that sleep deprivation is a form of torture.
I’m beginning to think that my children hate me.
Well the two littler ones that is; I know the other two adore me.
Thursday night is my chill out night. It’s my night. My mum comes around for dinner, and does the dishes, the kids are usually worn out by an almost full week at school, and collapse into bed, and all my favourite shows are on. I ignore the house work and blogging, and anything else that might try and capture my attention (husband included), and indulge in a frivolous evening of prime time soap operas.
Not last night.
It started at about eight. Tim and I were enjoying some couple time, when we hear crying from the B room. I got up and checked. Bailey appeared to be wingeing in his sleep, but he stopped, so I didn’t think anything of it.
Not two minutes later, we heard the crying coming again, more intense this time, and when I went to check, I found my dear little boy in our room, next to my side of the bed, ostensibly trying to wake me up, except that I wasn’t there. So I carried him back to bed, where it soon became apparent that he was either in some kind of pain, or suffering from a night terror. He was crying and thrashing, and obviously very uncomfortable.
I ended up bringing him out to Tim, because there are some problems only daddy can fix, and after we succeeded in waking him up, he did a giant wee, then fell asleep on Tim’s lap.
Five minutes after he was sound asleep back in bed, it was Ava’s turn. She wasn’t suffering from belly pain (which was what Bailey told me this morning), or night terrors. She was just being difficult. In fact she spent the majority of the night refusing to sleep, unless she was curled up next to me, which she never does.
It is a true testament to God’s sense of humour that three out of my four children, and my husband are so physically affectionate when I am the exact opposite. Leave me alone, cause I like my space.
Until last night, Ava has been just like me.
Now I don’t know if it’s because it is a bit cooler; we Darwinites turn into giant sooks once the weather dips below 20 degrees, or if she was just being a rabbit. To be honest, at four o clock in the morning, I don’t really care!
And then Bailey woke up again. Apparently the cat has decided that the new bunk beds have been installed completely for his personal comfort, and so he decided to exercise his territorial rights when Bailey did something silly, like try to sleep in his own bed!
So it was me, Tim, Bailey and Ava, all lined up like sardines in a row, with me wide awake thinking ‘there were four in the bed.. And I’ll probably blog about this tomorrow.’
I am seriously so over not getting a good night sleep! What a completely ridiculous idea it was having four children. What were we thinking? Imagine what we could have done if we had just stopped at one. Or two. Not only would we have so much more time, but we would have increased mental capacity which is definitely an added bonus! I might actually write decent blogs instead of boring everyone to tears with my incessant, sleepless rant.
But then again, maybe I wouldn’t have too much to write about. Whilst the older girls definitely provide blogging fodder, I can’t imagine not having my little man to brag about. Even in the middle of the night he is adorable.
And dear sweet Ava. Who keeps me up during the night, and then refuses to sleep during the day. Who laughs when I say no, and has the strongest, most stubborn streak I have ever seen in such a tiny person…well I can’t imagine being without her.
I don’t want to imagine being without her.
It might be the lack of sleep talking, but it seems to me that we mums spend a lot of time talking about how much we love our kids, and how we would do anything for them. We like to imagine ourselves as some kind of Erin Brockovich or other inspirational movie mums. When the reality is that we do in fact do everything for our kids. But everything is packaged up in sleepless nights, peanut butter sandwiches and the inability to have a clean house for longer than five minutes.
The mundane can wear us down sometimes. It can be easy to think about what we were before, or what we could be now. But when I stop and think about it, I have four beautiful people who think the world of me. Who want to wear my clothes, and steal my hair cut, and play ‘people’ or just climb into bed for a cuddle.
It makes me realise that the greatest thing I can ever be is ‘mum.’
And somehow, that makes the lack of sleep all worth it.