Claire began sleeping through the night when she was 6 weeks old. So, by the time Lucy came along, Chris and I had been sleeping like regular people for 4 years, 1 month, and 3 days. The sleepless nights and harrowing devastation of sleep deprivation were a distant memory. We had been through counseling. We had served our time in support groups. We had moved on.
And then, in one fateful night, everything changed. And magically, when our sweet, sleepless baby came into our lives, our four year-old forgot how to sleep too. Like a skeleton in the closet, that monster of sleep deprivation reared his ugly head. Only this time, he had doubled in size.
Doesn’t she look peaceful? I’m pretty sure she’s about to drift off.
Now that we’ve come through that dark valley and are once again residing in the land of the living, I’d like to reach out and offer a life line to others who are suffering.
I’ve compiled a list of the top ten signs that you are suffering from sleep deprivation – most likely due to those little people living in your house that you refer to as your children. If one or more of these symptoms applies to you, please reach out and seek support. Help is available!
Top 10 Signs That You Are Suffering From Sleep Deprivation
10. You fight to put the baby to bed instead of the four year-old so you can maybe catch a cat nap in the rocker.
9. You are sleeping on sheets that may contain spots of <insert: poop, spit up, urine, etc.>
8. You buy Visine and under-eye concealer by the case.
7. For your birthday, you asked your parents for a nap.
6. When you hear a noise down the hall in the middle of the night, you hope it’s an intruder and not your child coming to ask for a glass of water.
5. You wonder daily about the mathematics of sleep and why your two hour stretches that total up to six hours don’t feel the same as six hours used to feel.
4. You pray the most fervent prayers of your life – begging God, bargaining with God, hoping for just a few peaceful moments of rest.
3. You wonder if this is Ever. Going. To. End.
2. You light candles for POWs who are held in prison camps which utilize sleep deprivation as a method of torture.
1. You have an IV hooked up directly to your coffee pot.
Dear friend, please know, it will end. The stars will align, the monitor will stay quiet, and the pull-up will stay dry. And on that glorious night, when you sleep that glorious sleep, the memories of your torture will start to fade. Finally, the healing can begin.