From the Sleep Deprived Mommy of a Newborn Baby
I hate waiting rooms. I always have. But today things are different. Today, for the first time in my entire life, I have come to appreciate waiting rooms.
You see, I gave birth a couple of weeks ago, and ever since the magical moment I held my baby in my arms, I have not had the chance to sleep for longer than 1.5 hours. That’s all I get to sleep before my baby wakes up again asking for more milk.
To put this into perspective, movies take an average of 2 hours. That’s half an hour longer than my naps. So basically, in the past two weeks I’ve been napping, several times per day (and night) – so much so that the concept of sleeping has become a distant memory that has faded so much that I can barely recall what a good night’s sleep felt like.
I’m sure it must have been a great sensation as I try to recall those late mornings on weekends way before I had kids. It seems like such a long time ago. Who knows? Who cares anymore?
I yawn as I push away this thought. The only thing that matters to me right now is this waiting room where I am sitting right now.
Without my kids.
And the best part is that it’s filled with adults, a species that I haven’t seen in a while. I thought they were extinct. Or maybe it was me who got extinct.
I yawn one more time, thinking is too exhausting for me.
I can now close my eyes and sleep without having to worry about waking up to feed a baby or to play with a toddler.
As I sit myself comfortably in my seat I smile secretly and yawn at how lucky I am. I think of my husband waiting for me in the car with the baby, and I yawn again.
Today is my lucky day.
I get to sleep alone.
Yes, motherhood can be exhausting. It can test your patience, your limits and can show your strengths you didn’t know existed. Wait, what am I talking about? What strengths. I have absolutely no strength. I am tired, sleep deprived, and when I saw myself in the elevator’s mirror, I greeted myself the way you would greet a stranger because I did not recognize myself.
“Gosh this woman looks terribly tired,” I thought to myself.
But then I realized it was me. And of course, I was too tired to bother. I just yawned and I kept going. I am waiting for the postnatal nurse to check my wound because this time around I had a C-section. My baby’s placenta was very low which meant that he wasn’t going to be able to exit by himself, so they had to push him out from a different place. They had to cut me to get the baby out and today I can’t be more grateful for this cut as I get to enjoy a good sleep in this waiting room.
I yawn and smile again thinking how lucky I am. Yes indeed. Today is my lucky day. As I close my eyes, I hear a cry. A baby’s crying. I instinctively interrupt my sleep and realize it’s another woman’s baby crying next to me.
It wasn’t my baby. It was another woman’s baby, and she had to deal with him. Not me. I can close my eyes and sleep one more time while she deals with her baby.
I yawn one more time and I realize that I have started lactating. My body reacted to the cry of this baby as if it were my own. Who knew motherhood could leave imprints so deep? And then I realized how much I missed my baby. After all, he’s been inside me for 9 months and after his birth I’ve been feeding him my milk. He’s been sleeping on my chest. I’ve been kissing every inch of his tiny body.
I missed him.
I felt the urge to get over with this appointment and to hug my baby one more time.
I may be sleep deprived, exhausted and angry most of the time. But I have a little baby to kiss and hug and that was all worth it.
I yawned one more time thinking how beautiful motherhood was, and then the nurse called me in.
Ghada Karam recently moved to Canada from Thailand where she used to live with her husband and kids. She’s a little obsessed with gossiping about her kids. She blogs about the fun side of parenting: milestones, tantrums and communication! Her work has also appeared on the Huffington Post, BLUNTmoms, BKK Kids, Expat Life in Thailand among others. You can follow her on Facebook and Instagram.