As If Moms Need More Proof Sleep Deprivation Is Real

A lot of people say they never understood exhaustion until they became a parent. That wasn’t the case with me.  I’ve dealt with exhaustion from sleep issues, and depression/anxiety, so after Baby Grouch Number One was born I think I actually felt better in the mornings than I used to.  I was tired, of course, but I was always tired and honestly having a kid just gave me an excuse to get up and keep moving, and I didn’t feel any worse, most of the time, so I just focused on the gift that is motherhood and welcomed the fact that I felt like shit, on most days. I felt the same amount of tiredness that I used to, but at least I was being productive, and I had newfound happiness.

But, once Baby Grouch Number Two came along, I began to understand how those other people felt. I hit the ground running.  With two, there was not much time for resting postpartum, and I had to keep moving.  I still do.  There is no down time.  The house is constantly a mess, my arms are constantly carrying my little ones, along with bags, bottles, books, baby dolls, diapers, wipes, sippy cups and peanut butter crackers.

So, there’s coffee.

But holy hell, I am TIRED. And even though people always ask, “is the baby sleeping?”  it doesn’t really matter if the kids sleep through the night or not, it’s the cumulative effect of sporadic mid-night wake ups, waking up to pee, hearing phantom baby cries, hormonal changes (hello night sweats!?! ugh) and Mom Ears – supersonic hearing that cause me to wake up when my husband rolls over, or my daughter coughs, or when the tree branch scratches the window outside the dining room, downstairs, on the other side of the house (we’re getting that tree cut down soon).

There is not enough coffee in the world.

Recently there was a study about how moms are sleep deprived, even several months after giving birth.  So, there’s the scientific proof.  But we moms don’t fucking need it, do we?  No. We don’t.  We know it’s real based on the stupid shit we do when we’re in such a state. Here’s my latest:

1) I went jogging with a pal the other day.  Which sounds good, until you hear the rest.  We meet at a local gym (that neither of us is a member at), park our cars and jog from there.  We are typically gone for about an hour or so.  On our last jaunt, I was exhausted (shocker) and had to walk the last half mile.  I got back to the parking lot and my pal was still there.  I thought maybe I wasn’t that slow, since she was still there stretching, but NO.  She was there to tell me, “um, your car door was open this whole time”.  I left my car door open, for an hour, while we jogged.  She looked concerned.  I was embarrassed, since this was one of those friends who you really don’t want your crazy to show, you know? But, she’s seen it, that’s for sure, so oh well. Thank goodness I live in freaking suburbia because my wallet was in my trunk, safe and sound.

1b) I was reminded that I was also pretty loopy after having just one kid.  I went jogging once and didn’t realize until about two miles in that I was wearing two different shoes.

mommy brain

2.  I drink coffee all. day. long.  I have to or I will stop moving.  So I turned on the Keurig the other day and turn around and see this:

mommy brain 3

I forgot to put coffee cup under the spout.  Eff.

3.  I have to pee a lot, from all that coffee, but I’m even screwing up peeing.  I went to the doctor and was supposed to pee in a cup before heading to the room.  I went in, peed, came out, and realiized I forgot to pee in the cup.  The nurse came in the room and gave me a quizzical look.  I gave her a head shake, and a shoulder shrug while saying, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I forgot”.  I had to laugh becacuse it feels like there is literally nothing I can do about this kind of crap. I accepted it, chugged some water and tried again later (I had to focus, but I was able to complete the task)

toilet

4.  I got in a fight with my husband, I forget about what (of course). We were arguing and then went to the grocery store and then was so tired I forgot I was even mad at him.  Probably for the best, but still.  You know how annoying spouses can be.  So that’s some serious tiredness to completely forget that shit.  And then, I remembered what I was mad about later, and I didn’t even care.  So tired.

5. I’ve lost two car keys in the last few months.  Those fuckers are expensive.  Did Toddler Grouch toss them in the trash?  Are they in the basket they should be, I just can’t see them through my exhausted glassy-eyed gaze?  It’s a modern day mystery.

mommy brain 2

I’m all about scientific studies, so YAY SCIENCE for discovering we’re all sleep-deprived.  Even though we already knew.

Quite frankly, it makes me feel better when I hear that I’m not alone.  It’s things like this (it’s HILARIOUS – click it!) from Momastery‘s Facebook page, that make me smile and think that what I’m going through is perfectly normal and perfectly fine.  I can laugh at myself, (and let’s be honest, a little harder at the other acts of sleep-deprivation that are not my own) and keep on truckin’.  Peace out, fellow Mamas, who do so much, with working brain cells so few.

Any sleep-deprivation stories you want to share with me, so I feel less alone?!

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34 thoughts on “As If Moms Need More Proof Sleep Deprivation Is Real

  1. I love your sense of humor through all of it.

    When I was expecting Baby #3, Toddler #2 wanted me to read bedtime stories to her, and I was glad to do so because I knew she would get a little less attention real soon. One night, I was reading a story, and I was so exhausted that I fell asleep IN THE MIDDLE OF A SENTENCE! Toddler #2 is grown now but still remembers how Mom just conked out.

  2. Thank you for your stories! They make me laugh, and feel a little less crazy.

    At my baby #2’s two week check up, I went ahead and signed her in – with baby #1’s name… The front desk took a minute, then yelled into the waiting room – um, is this supposed to be for Lacey, not Jillian? Yep, I forgot my new baby had a new name – and now everybody in the waiting room knew that I forgot too. Ay!

  3. I am with you. Trying toget used to being anew mom myself, I am sucking back coffee all day. I have also learned to drink an entire cup in 2 gulps. Haha!
    I wore 2 different flip flops one day. Took me like 30 minutes to figure out what was feeling ‘off’.
    And the sweating. For the love of boob sweat. I have added deodorant to new places. When does it end?

  4. Ohh! Thank you very much for share your experience!! I have 2 boys, 3 years and 18 months, and I have almost 4 years unable to sleep a complete night. I feel just like you… I drink a lot of coffee, and Zero ( coke) to keep my eyes open!! I use to forget where I am for seconds, or what I am talking about. I was thinking that I am just becoming old, but now I see, its normal!!! Thank you! I feel better!

  5. My third baby boy never slept – so neither did we!
    It’s all a blur now, but I did get sent away from a blood donor session because they didn’t think I was up for it!
    Keep on grouching!

  6. Totally forgot to go to no less than 2 scheduled important school meetings and no less than 2 scheduled doctor appointments, even after everyone called to confirm that I was coming…and I’m sure there are more. I need a personal assistant to make sure I get where I am supposed to be. You are not alone. 🙂

  7. I can definitely commiserate. I have three kids 5 and under with a 4th on the way. I’ve done my fair share of stupid/forgetful.
    Exhibit A: I routinely put objects in the microwave and have to open the door 3-4 times before I successfully remember what I put in there long enough to set the power and timer. Bonus: Sometimes I heat up a quick snack in there only to have my husband find it hours later. Because I forgot I had put anything in there…and that I was hungry…
    Exhibit B: After my second was born, I went out for the day with my mom and aunt. I parked, got out, and began to walk toward the store. Totally normal. Until that is, my mom pointed out that I had left the car running. Not just left the car unlocked or left the keys in the ignition, but left it running!!!
    I know there are countless others but I’m too tired to remember. Or maybe I’ve just blocked it all out. Keep on trucking Grouchy Mom. And drink a cup of coffee me and all the other moms who can’t have it.

  8. I also suffer! Lol but not as much as I had a few months ago. With 3 kids, a nearly 7 year old and 2 babies just 13 months apart it was pretty insane there for about a year….just a year! Haha I once had mama sleep brain and about 2 hours of sleep with many many interruptions (as my man somehow can’t hear anything when he’s peacefully sleeping!) I was going through my day and 5 different people commented on how sleep deprived I was, literally mumbling and forgetting daycare bags I had just put down lol and then forgetting the kids ages when a stranger asked, they must have thought I was the worst mother haha
    My hubby also once made coffee with the coffee can underneath the drip instead of the container, lol

    • I totally get the “it’s just a year” mentality. It took me about 9 months with baby number one to feel relatively sane, so i figure a little longer with number 2 is normal. Too bad my hubby doesn’t get it quite as much as yours seems to have!

  9. Oh, I feel you. I went to the grocery store and left the side door of the van wide open while I grocery shopped. I just recently made plans to have friends over for a BBQ and when she emailed me to ask what they should bring, my mind was a total blank on agreeing to a date. I mean, nothing there at all. I had to go back through our emails to see that we actually did it. Not to mention the numerous times I went grocery shopping and forgot several items, that were on my list, in my hand. I think this is just giving me insight to what getting old will be like. But, hopefully, I will have a drink in my hand and just not care. LOL. You are so not alone. It’s nice to see I am not alone too!!!

    • haha those first two examples are awesomely hilarious. i forget items on my list every time at the grocery – which is why i’m there a few times a week. i’m so glad i’m not alone!! thanks for sharing.

  10. Thank you for writing this! I’ve done some of the same crap! I was so sleep deprived once I went to put a tampon in and realized I had already put TWO in somehow. I constantly look for my car keys, only to find out they’re in my hands! I literally have to write shit down the second I think of it, because if I don’t, I’ll forget a minute later! I am forever two or three days ahead or behind in my brain (I think it’s Friday all day, when it’s actually sunday). I have forgotten countless times to put water in the espresso machine and after waiting forever for it to brew, it finally dawns on me. Put this all on top of a thyroid disorder that makes me even more tired, and you’ve got a great combo! 2 kids, age 2 and 3. Wtf was I thinking? Lol

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