I am perpetually exhausted. If we are counting, this has been going on for 18 plus months. As soon as I found out I was pregnant, the exhaustion set in. The cause of exhaustion doesn’t matter. But what does matter is how hard it can be to function, stay motivated and find peace when you are tired. And because these things are hard, I have to work on what I am saying to myself about how tired I am all the time.
A sweet friend recently told me when her kids were young that her husband had to remind her never to sit down. If she sat down she would never get up because she was too tired. That is the phase of life I am in right now. I am constantly chasing sleep. I do the math in my head daily about how much sleep I am actually getting. I cannot even remember what 8 hours in a row looks like, let alone 6 hours. But coffee exists. As do naps.
There is a reason those coping skills exist. They exist to remind me that there is help and support in the world. Friends and family are here to help. God helps. Nature helps. Snuggles help. We were put on this earth to help each other and learn from each other. Raising young kids is the perfect time to lean on others and learn from them.
My lack of sleep is a reminder that even the most beautiful of things can be hard at the same time. And it is ok to feel that way. Parenting is hard in general, but when you add lack of sleep it is an entirely different type of hard.
Here’s what I am slowly figuring out. I will always be a little envious of the families whose kids are easy sleepers. But that’s ok. And I am ok with our family. Because it has Owen in it. And Owen is ours. So if we have the kid who doesn’t sleep (or eat- a different story for another day) that is ok. Because eventually I do believe I will sleep again. And in the mean time I will work on finding joy through the exhaustion. Because like any challenging thing in life, attitude and mindset can change everything.
So as I type this and drink my 2nd cup of coffee of the day, I am working towards choosing gratitude for my exhaustion. Because my reason for this utter exhaustion is Owen. And man, am I grateful for him.