There is a movement around Facebook and blogs at the moment to document the less-than-pretty sides of life. The idea is to counter-act the “highlight reel” mentality of social media where you compare your real life to the things everyone else has carefully curated and find it cruelly wanting. I am the first to admit that my Facebook feed tends to be full of gorgeous pictures of my kids doing gorgeous things. I don’t apologise for that as my primary use of Facebook is to share those photos with family and friends that I don’t often see. But blogs are places to be real and whilst I always reveal my heart, I don’t often write about the minutiae of every day life – whether it be positive or negative. So, in the interest of honesty and solidatory , here is an account of last night:
Our littlest man is not sleeping well. Twelve month old separation anxiety coupled with teething and the edge of a cold have conspired together. And in a story echoed in bedrooms across the world, we are too tired to do all the “right” things and instead do the thing that gets us the maximum amount of minimal sleep. Yes, Elijah has moved into our bed. I hate this, I feel guilty about this, I feel terrified about this. I also want to sleep.
Knowing that the night ahead is unlikely to yield much sleep, I go to bed. I leave Elijah sleeping peacefully on N as he watches sport for a few hours. This wonderfully self-less act is called “looking after the baby so mummy can get some rest.”
N comes to bed with a crying baby. It cannot be time already can it? Quietly resign myself to the fact the best minutes of sleep for the night are far behind me now. Settle baby. Consider transferring him to his cot. Know that this will result in him waking. Shift him to carefully be between us, away from any pillows and hold breath hoping none of that will wake him. Watch him breathe peacefully. Settle into sleep.
Elijah awake. Soothe with pats and songs. Still crying. Does he have a temperature? He must have a temperature? Must be teething. Has to be something. Do I give him Panadol? Am I really just trying to drug him into sleeping?
Finally have settled him (Panadol was involved). Cannot go back to sleep. Need some water. Creep out of bed to get some water.
Starting to drift off to sleep. N starts to snore. Poke him and implore him to get onto his side. Muffled noises. Compliance.
Need to pee. Why did I drink that water?
Elijah crying. Elijah darling, go to sleep. Please, please, please go to sleep.
Elijah crying. Darling, darling, I thought we were friends? Help me out. Tomorrow I check into a hotel overnight. I swear I will do it.
Elijah crying. Blearily look at clock. 4:00AM? Did I really just get two hours sleep? Two hours sleep!
Elijah crying. Little boy, if I buy you a pony will you let me sleep?
Elijah crying. Wonder if I am unwittingly part of sleep deprivation experiment. Expect David Attenborough type to step out from the curtains “now, watch what happens when the female adult is denied sleep …”
Elijah asleep. Car drives past and I hear the bass before the engine. Who has their radio up at five in the morning? You wake my baby, I WILL hunt you down.
Radio talk show hosts enter our room. The alarm. Elijah still asleep. Thank Goodness. Can I make lunches whilst he still sleeps? Really should. Okay, will get up when the weather is on. Weather is on. WIll get up when the news is on. News is on. Will get up with the traffic report is on. Traffic report is on.
N wakes. “I didn’t sleep that well” he says.