It’s 3am and the house is quiet. Everyone’s asleep (or trying to sleep) all except for me and Dylan. It’s the 5th time I’ve had to get up with him since I went to bed at 10pm. I’m not sure what’s unsettling him. I don’t know whether he’s teething, he’s feeling unwell or whether he just wants some company.
What I do know is that I’m the only one at this hour that can comfort him.
As he lays there on my chest, his head rested on my shoulder he instantly relaxes. Whatever was bothering him seems to bother him no longer so long as he’s in my arms. When I think he’s drifted off to sleep I try to gently lay him back in his cot only for him to cry again. It really is exhausting. I never had sleeping issues with my daughter. She was always such a good little sleeper and even now she sleeps 7:30pm-7:30am. I wrote in a post a couple of weeks ago (Dylan – You are 17 months old) that, after 17 long months of wakeful nights, you had finally cracked the sleeping through bit. Well that post came back to bite me on the arse because he’s not slept through since!
What is it about little ones needing you? It’s a mothering battle that I will never win. On one hand I’m at the end of my tether, praying that tonight will be the night he sleeps through and on the other hand I feel an overwhelming sense of love and softness when it’s the still of the night and it’s only us two. Nestled in each other, not making a sound and just enjoying the quiet cuddles. It’s like our own special club. I feel like I’m needed and that I serve a purpose. I remind myself that these moments, however exhausting they are, won’t last forever.
The days without sleep are hard. My patience is short, my energy levels are zapped and I have bags under my eyes big enough to carry the weekly shop in.
But you just cope don’t you?
You do whatever you can to survive and get through the day and do it all again the next night. Because that’s what motherhood, or parenthood, is. It’s surviving. It’s about winging it at every opportunity. You pray to the big man upstairs that tonight will be the night that you get more than a 2 hour stretch of sleep before you have to get up again and when you hear those faint little cry’s (that soon turn it to extra loud wails if your not quick enough!) your heart sinks a little bit. But as soon as you realise that those cry’s were for you and your touch, every little irritated and exhausted feeling goes straight out of the window. That’s motherhood. It’s the good, the bad and the eye bags all rolled in to one and do you know what? I wouldn’t have it any other way!