Sleep... For Wimps Only

I don't think I have ever really had a full night sleep. It doesn't count when I was a child because I have no memory of that sleep-therefore it must not have been so great. When I was in high school I wanted to be able to sleep but my bedroom was directly below the kitchen and every morning my dad would pound his foot onto the floor waking me up in the most pleasant way... I still hold a grudge against him for the years of therapy this caused me. In college... well that isn't really sleeping is it? It is more like a few years of being passed out so I didn't get the time to bask in the sleep-and besides, I was only an on-campus student for three semesters before I decided to fall in love and get married and throw out all dreams of a college degree until I was pregnant with my second child and thought "I just don't have enough to do, I think I'll go back and finish school!" (I was severely sleep deprived when I came up with that plan!)

I love all of those commercials about sleep where the person is in a bed of soft linens and plump pillows. My bed looks more "lived in" than slept in. Our sheets are so old that you can see the mattress pattern under them and the pillows are so flat that I may as well be putting a sheet of paper under my head each night. We also only have a queen size bed... I say "only" because I would give my youngest child for a king size bed. My husband is a "close" sleeper, whereas I am a "do not touch me" sleeper. He refuses to buy a king size for fear that he will have to sleep alone on his side--that sounds like pure bliss to me!

After I started sleeping with my husband-or should I say not sleeping, more like dodging arms and legs between cat naps, I discovered that he loved the morning. His alarm goes off and he literally JUMPS out of bed thrilled that a new day is upon us. He will then stand by the side of the bed saying things like "OK, get up babe, let's go, I'll help you make the bed, c'mon we have so much to do today" and so on... I could literally rip his arms off when he starts clapping and dancing to get me up. If you have not realized yet, I am not a morning person-I may not even be a good "awake" person.

After we had our fist daughter, she was a wonderful sleeper. 12 hours the first night home from the hospital. This may have been the only time in my life that I actually slept! Then we had our second child and he had an aversion to sleep--for at least 3 years! I was a walking zombie-do not ask me to conjure up any memories of those years because it is like I was abducted by aliens and they performed the ever popular mind-eraser on me (that is also the name of a cocktail I have had and the name fits it perfectly because I have no recollection of talking to that police officer's horse, or going to the bathroom on the expressway the night of my bachelorette party, but I digress...) Our third child was a good sleeper, until I became pregnant and was so exhausted that I could not see straight, this was obviously her cue to wake up 4-5 times a night... just to say hi.

And what is the deal with pregnant sleep? I have had many a conversation with God about this and it makes no sense to me. From the moment of conception I am in the bathroom numerous times a night to pee-this is so weird to me because the kiddo is the size of speck of dust and somehow my bladder cannot handle the pressure. Then, as the tummy gets bigger it gets harder to simply turn over. I have to wake up, move over, move my husband's arm and leg from on top of me, sit up, turn my hips and finally lay back down only to think "since I am awake should I just get up to pee? If I don't just go now I will just be awake again in 45 minutes." After returning from the bathroom I lay down only to think "am I supposed to be on my left side or right? Why can't I sleep on my back again? What did that pregnancy book tell me to do?" and so I lay awake worrying about all the ways to sleep and if I am going to fatally cut off some vital organ.

I always tell my children that they are driving me crazy (in the most loving way of course) and recently I have been thinking... it would not be so bad to be in a fully padded room. I bet they get great insulation so that it is completely quiet-that sounds like a sleep deprived person's fantasy to me. I know just where to book my next vacation--Loonies Are Us, where there are no clown suits and water towers for crazy people to climb for miles!

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