Sleep. And the Six Stages of Sleep Deprivation.


We know that having kids mean that we are going to lose sleep. We know this. Everyone knows this. This isn’t new information. Right?

I think the surprise comes when your kids enter the stage where they should be sleeping through the night. But, they don’t. Did they not get the memo? Do they not realise it’s night time? Can they not see the bags under Mummy’s eyes? I mean, astronauts in the International Space Station can see the bags under Mummy’s eyes, for goodness sake.

I should mention at this point that I am writing this blog under the influence. That is, under the influence of No Sleep. I had two hours of broken sleep last night. Yes, you read correctly. TWO. HOURS. Two. TWO. Sigh.

BabyGirl is not a great sleeper, let’s be honest. Actually, to be fair, she can sleep 8-10 hours if she wants. But, her 8-10 hours generally starts at midnight. Or, in last night’s case – 3am. THREE. A. M. I just can’t even.

So, after a few hours of tears, feeding, playing, me dozing in my chair as BabyGirl literally runs circles around me, and many, many false attempts to get her into bed (you know, the “I’m asleep until you put me in my cot, at which point my eyes will shoot open, I’ll flash you my cutest smile and be wide awake again” moments), she finally dropped of at 3am. I quietly carried her to her room, in pitch darkness (heaven forbid I turn on a light and wake her) and tenderly place her in her cot. I back away from the cot, begging my joints to please not squeak right now (because, in the dead of night, I seem to suddenly gain the body of an arthritic Nana), and slump out of the room. Nothing. Not a sound. Oh my goodness. Perform a mini victory dance in the hallway before going into my own room and flopping onto the bed, eyes closed before I hit the pillow.


I just. What? I mean, really? How do they KNOW?! HOW DO THEY KNOW?! Literally one minute after I got into bed. ONE MINUTE.


I open my eyes to find BoyChild climbing into bed with us. “Please go to sleep” I whisper to him. “YOU OK, MUM? YOU OK, DADDY?”. Sigh.

After an hour and some of being kicked in the head, pushed off the bed, slapped, kissed, cuddled, yelled at and damn near falling off the bed, I packed a huff.

“GET INTO YOUR OWN BED” I whispered through clenched teeth. No more Nice Mummy.

I think the clock said 5-something. It could have said 6. Heck, it could have said 12. I don’t know, I couldn’t comprehend anything by that stage. I dozed on and off from then.

Mr T woke me around 8:30 to say he was going. I asked him where. He replied that Princess had kindy. Oh, that’s right – Stage 1 of Sleep Deprivation – Memory Loss. Remember the days when, pre-kids, you could pull an all-nighter and sleep the next day? I don’t. We’ve got ‘sponsibilities nowadays. Grown up ‘sponsibilities. Like children.

Once Mr T came back from kindy drop off, I bundled BoyChild into the car and went to our Friday Coffee Group. I couldn’t have gotten that coffee into me any quicker. If they had a direct-to-vein-via-iv option, I’d have taken it. The morning wasn’t bad, considering. Mostly because I was comfortably in Stage 2 of Sleep Deprivation – Everything Is Hilarious. You know, when your friend drops her phone and can’t be bothered picking it up, and you laugh and laugh because she can’t be bothered picking up her phone? Right? Hilarious. Or when you think of a story but can’t formulate the words in your head, so you make up a word, then laugh and laugh because words are funny. And, to top it off, you snort while laughing, which just sets you off again. What can I say, I’m hilarious.

After I picked Princess up from kindy at midday, I came home and had lunch. I use that term loosely, because I am pretty sure I stared blankly at my cup of soup, stirring it slowly. Mr T asked me if I needed a nap. I’m not sure I replied. Stage 3 of Sleep Deprivation – Dead Tiredness.

I should say, I was very, very lucky today to have Mr T on a day off, otherwise I could never have completed Stage 4 of Sleep Deprivation – The Nap. The Glorious Nap. I slept, and I slept hard. For about an hour. Stop it.

Alas, I’ve woken deep in Stage 5 of Sleep Deprivation – Don’t TALK to me. Don’t LOOK at me. Don’t COME NEAR ME. Captain Grumpy Pants has arrived. And, to quote Alicia Keys, This Girl is on Fire. I love my kids, and I love how they have sensed my Captain Grouchballs and raised me a “let’s give Mum space”. I just adore those little dudes. The ones sitting on the other side of the living room, playing quietly.

The day is dragging, but before long it will be witching hour. The kids will have dinner, have baths and go to bed. And then, poor, sleep deprived Mumma can sit on the chair and enter Stage 6 of Sleep Deprivation – The End. The release. There may be tears, there may be giggling. I’ll tell you what – there will defo be chocolate. But, at least I would have lasted the day. And, tomorrow is another day. But, please-oh-dear-lord-PLEASE can BabyGirl go to bed before midnight tonight?! Please? Please.

“Hey! Yo! BabyGirl! You go to bed ‘fore midnight, ya’ hear?!”

She says no. With that cute smile and nose twitch. I just. Sigh.