Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Andes mountains got nothin' on motherhood

Elijah is going through a tough phase right now. Ever since he had that 24 hour fever last week, he's been having accidents in his bed every night. He also won't eat anything unless it has jelly on it and he gets stressed out by the littlest change in plans. I usually would have all sorts of time and energy to face these things head on, encouraging him and challenging him to grow, but I'm just too tired right now. The stupid thing is, my 9 week old sleeps through the night. He now goes to bed just before 7pm and sleeps until the sun comes up at 6am. You'd think I'd be getting some sleep, but it hasn't happened for me yet. This is why:

I finally get myself to bed after cleaning up the house and folding the laundry. If I'm lucky, I was able to squeeze in a shower, too. Dan takes a break from school work to chat with me while I try to fall asleep.


Light pours into the room. A belt hits the floor. A mouth breathing bear flops down, shaking me from my dreams. Dan is instantly asleep and I'm awake.

Elijah coughs so hard it sounds like he might throw up. I tell myself not to go in unless he asks for me...

Eli asks for me. As I give him medicine, I realize he's wet the bed. Eli goes potty, I change Elijah and the sheets, find a new blanket and spend the next 20 minutes convincing Elijah it's still night time.

Dan has a coughing fit. He rustles around for a Ricola....mouth noises begin. AHH!!!

I hear Lazzy begin to squeak but I try to ignore him until he starts to cry.

Laz finds his thumb. He goes back to sleep.

Elijah wakes up and knocks loudly on the door. I rush to open the door before Eli wakes his brother, but it's too late. Both boys are up. The day begins.

Thankfully, Dan is still being gracious and letting me sleep in when I can. It takes him a while to wake up in the mornings, so it's good for him to laze around with Eli for an hour or two before he goes to school. I am so glad Lazzy can sleep through the night. We had the exact opposite experience with Elijah. Still, I have yet to sleep longer than 2 hours at a time because of the other two men in my life. I feel as if everything in the universe is working together to keep me sleep deprived. Doesn't the universe know that a well rested mommy is a happier, better mommy??? Please, someone, tell the universe!!!!

I feel like motherhood with two has been the hardest thing I've done in my life so far, and that's saying a lot. I've summited a 14,000 foot pass in the Andes Mountains with a stomach bug. I've gotten my nose pierced and have a tattoo. I've been on an airplane for 18 hours straight, once with a newborn and then again with a one year old learning how to walk. I've lived in Africa where I peed in a latrine with only three walls (you'd think that would be enough...) while a group of village kids pointed and watched. I've experienced natural childbirth, TWICE. Yes, these things were difficult and challenging, but they got nothin' on motherhood. It is kicking my butt!

BUT, this is why I do it:

Where would I be without my mother? She was the glue that kept our crazy family together. She was the only sane one who could remember and take care of the things we all needed. She kept us clean, fed and never without fresh underwear. Yes, motherhood is kicking my butt. It's true that before dinner showed up tonight, I had only eaten a waffle, half a cheese stick, leftover scraps from Elijah's pb & j, and a cold cup of tea. My toe nails are so long they're making holes in my socks. I feel like I haven't slept in a year and when friends greet me, they ask if I'm sick. But all of this is worth it. I know this stage will fly by and soon and I'll be begging my boys to wake me up in the middle of the night just so I can spend time with them. My mother did all this and more for me and my FOUR siblings. I know I can survive the two.


  1. Beth - you are my role model! I think you are an amazing mom and I pray that I can have half as much joy and hope in the midst of my motherhood woes as you.

  2. Praying for you and all the sleep deprived moms this morning. I was told last week that it took three people to do my job: me to nurse and change the baby, Matt to play with the boys and wear them out, and my mom to do laundry and clean (and we still needed a cook!) This week I am solo and so tired! I feel your pain. But, wow! It is worth it huh? This morning I am reminding myself of that as Micah (age 5) bounded out of his room convinced that it was time to get up (his clock was off) and woke the whole house. Oh, what a way to start the day. At least it is Friday! I had two when Matt was in Optometry school. I know how tough it is-hang in there. I know you know this but it will be over soon and so worth it- and you are doing a fabulous job. Hooray for Laz sleeping through the night (you are bound to get at least a couple of good nights yourself soon!)