It’s 5am and up until a few moments ago, you were submerged in a fitful, tossing and turning kind of sleep. The kind of sleep that fights you from the moment you put your head on the pillow and which you desperately fight back with, in an attempt to achieve some kind of rest. Then,
You are pounced on by a bright eyed three year old, who pronounces that, “Mummy, I want a banana please!” and who then proceeds to nose dive beneath the duvet and wriggle around like a caterpillar on LSD, while you pray that you’re still wearing your pyjamas.
After that, the day gradually declines into a lethargic routine, where you try your best to meet your demanding children’s needs, along with dosing yourself with abnormal amounts of coffee – which by the way seems to have a hand in sending you to sleep, rather than kicking you into a bushy tailed state of alertness.
The day draws on and you navigate yourself between teething baby, stunt-girl baby and bored toddler. Your grand plan from the previous day, which involved cooking a delicious, nutritious and healthy evening meal, is sent flying out of the window as you yet again resort to bangers, mash and beans for the toddler and a jar of baby food with a fruit pot for the tiddlers. You completely forget to feed yourself and long suffering other half, so opt for a takeaway when they’re all in bed and spend the next two hours, clock watching – waiting desperately for the Cbeebies bed-time hour to draw to close.
Everything is now quiet. The slow, rhythmic breathing of your three sleeping angels can be heard softly through the baby monitor. The toys have been squirrelled,
messily neatly away and you’re sat with a pizza bigger than your ten-month-old, bruiser of a son. As you munch away on the terribly bad for you but oh so delicious grease fest, you get that sinking feeling.
You could have done better today. You could have approached certain situations differently. You could have overcome your overwhelming tiredness somehow and injected some positivity into the day. You could have made that healthy dinner. You could have taken everyone out for a walk and got some fresh air into their tiny lungs. You could have ignored the mess, the dirty dishes, the mountain of laundry and just played – you could have had fun.
You beat yourself up over the could haves and should haves so much, that the pizza in your mouth just doesn’t taste right any more. It’s unsavoury after taste, will follow you to bed and keep you awake during the night, as you run back and forth to the bathroom for a drink of water to satisfy your pizza thirst.
Another fitful, tossing and turning kind of sleep greets you. It’s 5am and your bladder is fit to burst but you just can’t bring yourself to leave that warm, comfy spot in bed for fear that you won’t be able to reclaim it again. Then,
You are pounced on by your bright-eyed three year old, who then curls up next to you and whispers in your ear,
“I love you mummy.”