You know when you have a baby, especially your first baby, and everyone is offering you all sorts of advice…? One of the most common pieces of advice is to sleep when the baby sleeps. Clean houses don’t matter. Laundry doesn’t matter. Sleep is important. A sleeping baby should automatically equal a sleeping mommy. Well, I have been given that advice almost nonstop the past several years and no, I did not just have a baby. People that know my work schedule tell me to sleep as much as possible and any chance that I get.
Our youngest is six and I have worked EXTREMELY HARD to keep him in the routine of a daily nap….even though it does not always work and I can see it slipping away completely in the near future. I have kept him napping because I rely on a daily nap. If you know me, you know that I work at night. Not all night, I do get home about 4am. And this causes my greatest internal struggle to date. The great sleep debate. People on an almost daily basis approach me and say things like “oh you look so tired”, “are you sick”, or “is everything alright- you don’t look so good”. To which I smile and most of the time laugh it off with an “I’m always tired.”
Really, I need to discover or even create a new word. I am not tired….or even exhausted….I am beyond both of those things. My schedule sucks. I know. It’s a part of my life right now… This is the season that I am currently in. I choose to do my best to focus on the positive things that it allows in my life.
All of that is quite lovely, but it still doesn’t settle the debate. How much sleep does a person truly need? I’ve done the research. I’ve read articles and studies graphs to try and map out when it would be healthiest for me to try and rest. But at the end of the day, I deal with the mommy guilt. I don’t want my kids to only remember me sleeping all of the time. Do you have any idea how much our schedules revolve around making sure that I get home by a certain time during the day to take a nap!?! They are very supportive and have always made extra efforts to let me sleep. But then when I wake up and feel like I missed out on a good chunk of the day….or an activity that they wanted to do….well, hello, mommy guilt…..
But then I think about the flip side of things… How many people truly get enough sleep anyway….? How many people jump out of bed when they hear the alarm feeling totally refreshed? Or are they dragging themselves to get coffee after hitting snooze one or two (or ten 😁) times….?
My days feel so much more productive and organized when I do get up early, which for me is like 7:30ish….but only going to bed at 4:15ish makes that a really hard thing to do. So my greatest internal battle besides just pulling myself out of bed is …..getting up and getting things done/taking a long nap/ missing that time with my kids OR sleeping later/ getting things done/taking a shorter nap/ getting a little time with the kids before dinner. It always feels like either way is a struggle. Some days I feel like such a failure. Why do I lack that much self control that I can’t make myself get out of bed when the alarm goes off??
This is something that I pray about- quite a lot. I pray that Jesus will zap me with energy when that alarm goes off. I pray that even though I only have a few hours sleep that it will feel like an entire marvelous night— we all know that time runs differently in heaven😃.
What I have come to discover is that no matter what your life looks like…..there are always struggles and battles to face. You can base your entire life looking forward to that next big thing….you know…..finding love, getting a promotion, moving out of your parents house, graduation, losing weight, etc, etc, etc…. No one is going to be completely happy in their life unless they choose to be.
JOY IS A CHOICE.
There will always be a new goal or dream, but don’t forget to live your life in the process. God didn’t call us to only enjoy the destination. He has called us to make an impact on others during the journey.
I may be a sleepy mommy, but I am blessed and love my life. I pray that I am used by God despite my weaknesses and failures.
Focus on the good. Focus on your blessings, instead of the struggle…. And drink lots of coffee….