Photo by: Shutterstock


Photo by: Shutterstock

Why do women keep secrets from other women? We are supposed to be a sisterhood. None of you told me what would become of my bladder after childbirth. No one warned me that almost the exact day I turned 40, my once supple face, would begin to exhibit a slight sag and that it would become astronomically hard to maintain my weight. AND no one prepared me for how little I would sleep. That’s just cold, man.

I managed to survive four babies. I have always been a light sleeper so it wasn’t hard for me to get out of bed. A cough in the middle of the night and I was up checking to make sure everyone was okay. I have also figured out that my bladder will wake me for relief. At least once a night I stumble to the bathroom. I accept that. My kids ruined my bladder.

But what about when everyone else in the house is sound asleep and I don’t even have to pee? Okay so maybe I always have to pee post-babies, but not always bad enough to wake. So what about those times when I just…wake up…for no apparent reason? Because it happens. ALL.THE.TIME.

As a mother of four I don’t make it to bed until late. You would think that I could hit the pillow and sleep like a baby. I actually have no problem falling asleep, but about four hours in, my eyes just… open.

Once my eyes open my woman brain springs to attention. She begins thinking about all of the things I have to do that day or all of the things that I should have done yesterday. In vain, I quickly try to shut my woman brain down. I think, just stop thinking. To which my woman brain responds: Are you actually THINKING that your woman brain should stop THINKING? And there it is. I am now having an argument with my woman brain. I might as well get up and do something constructive.

I don’t get up though because I am not going to let her win. I reason that maybe if I let her think for a bit she will let me go back to sleep? She goes through several random, meaningless thoughts. Just when I think she is winding down she starts wondering if my children eat enough veggies or if any of the girls at school are mean to my daughter. Really? You can’t think about this when it’s daylight?

Next she runs through all the scenarios of how I am damaging my kids with my horrible mothering. So after we get that sorted out, and mental notes made on how I will do things better, THEN I am certain it must be time to rest. Goodnight woman brain.

That is when my woman brain begins to wonder if my husband will ever lose his job. Really? Now we are on to financial matters? He’s had that job for years I scream at her! Why are you making up things to worry about? IT IS 2:30 AM FOR HEAVEN’S SAKE! Next, she ponders where we will take a family vacation and if we will have money for the kids to go to college.

My husband is sleeping like a baby right next to me so I am able to convince my woman brain that with all of the sweet, sweet rest that HE is getting, I am sure he will go into work tomorrow AS ALWAYS. Therefore, I am pretty sure she doesn’t need to worry about financial matters anymore tonight. Good. Night.

Then, just when I think she is done and I am going to get a little more sleep before the kids barge in demanding breakfast, I hear her whisper softly: I wonder if you have cancer? I am speechless. I cannot even talk her down from that one. She has officially worried about everything that one brain can possibly worry about now.

What has happened to me? When I was 20, if I woke in the middle of the night, it was because my arm was asleep and lying on top of my body in such a way that I was convinced it had to be a serial killer. I would throw it off my chest, realize it was actually my own arm, then simply turn over and go back to sleep. Those were the days.

I hear about women taking sleep aids just to get a solid four hours some nights. It is just not fair that we have to fight our own bodies. I go through my Facebook feed every morning and see posts from moms awake in the middle of the night looking to chat with other moms. And you know what? They always find someone. (Note to self: Next time just get on Facebook.)

This is an epidemic! We have to take our sleep back or at least provide fair warning to the next generation. Listen up young(er) women: SLEEP WHILE YOU CAN. There will come a day when it is much more difficult. Don’t take it for granted!

As I’m lying there in the dark thinking about how we need to warn women about this woman brain and the lack of sleep that comes with it, I look over at my husband. I could literally ram my finger into his ribs and he wouldn’t even stir. Not that I would do that or anything – unless he keeps lying on that pillow, looking like something out of a TempurPedic commercial. I mean, look at him. I am pretty sure he is mocking me now. And men wonder why women seem irritated with them, and can’t figure out why. Maybe they need a warning label, too.

Tonja used to live in the grown up world, but now she has a husband, four kids and a princess dog. She refuses to lose her sanity, or herself. If she’s going to be the mother of four, she’ll do it in great shoes. You can read more about Tonja’s hilarious escapades on her blog.

Like This Article

Like Mamapedia

Learn From Moms Like You

Get answers, tips, deals, and amazing advice from other Moms.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us
Want to become a contributor?
Want to become a contributor?

If you'd like to contribute to the Wisdom of Moms on Mamapedia, please sign up here to learn more: Sign Up

Recent Voices Posts

See all