What is Sleep?

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I used to love to sleep. I think. I don’t really remember it. I know I used to get in at least a good 7 hours most nights and would feel so tired if I only slept like 6. These days, 6 straight hours is a rare thing, a treasure. A friend who had a baby around the same time asked me today if the girls were sleeping through the night yet because her daughter is not and she was feeling frazzled. I’m pretty sure the baby who sleeps through the night at 5 months is a mythical creature. (And if you are someone who has or had one of these strange beasts, don’t tell me. I will hate you. J/K, J/K…kind of.)

 

The world of parenting continues to baffle me. It is incomprehensible how I can be so utterly exhausted, frustrated, and discouraged at the same time as being happier than I can even explain. What is that about? Like, would I rather be able to sleep as much as I want and not have the girls? Of course not. Do I cuss in the night when I have to get up and feed or comfort a crying baby (or, in Jude’s case, one who just yells for attention)? Absolutely. It’ll be 2 AM, I’ll have been up multiple times testing to see if the pacifier will get one or both of them back to sleep, I’ll be struggling to keep my eyes open while I will the volume in the bottle to go down faster and imagine what the bed is going to feel like when I get to lay in it, and yet a substantial part of me wants to sit and hold each girl after she’s finished, to not put her back to bed right away. I want to hug her and touch her little face and hands and feet. I don’t want to let her go. I mean how important is sleep really when I have the whole world in my arms? Yes, it’s an essential and restorative need – like a building block of life or something. I’m definitely struggling without it. But I also have a need to sniff a sweet baby head in the middle of the night, and that is sustaining too.

 

It’s a complicated life.

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