Maybe it's the solids. Maybe it's growing pains. Whatever the cause the result is the same.... Late nights and sleepy parents.
Before I had kids, I thought I understood tired. I was wrong. I had pulled all nighters in college. I had worked overnight shifts. But that was nothing compared to having kids.
I went into labor with C at 11:30 pm on a Tuesday, having not fallen asleep that day. I labored all night and 13 hours later I had an emergency C-Section. Between all the visitors and the new mom excitement, I didn't sleep that day. That evening I had a nurse that made me feed C every two hours, despite the fact that newborns mostly sleep the first 24 hours. So that night, we didn't sleep. We were in the hospital a few more days. C was a fussy baby and by the time we had left the hospital I had had a grand total of 8 hours of sleep.
That is when I began to understand tired. That tired that pervades every part of your body... The kind that foggies your mind and makes your body tremble.
C was a horrible sleeper, and she had colic... So she screamed and screamed and screamed. And I cried. People would tell me stories of their children sleeping through the night and I would stare blankly at them through my tired zombie eyes. Should I hit them in the head with a book? No, that would use to much energy. Just smile and nod.
I returned to work and she still got up 3-4 times a night, so the tired grew worse. After nine months, she finally slept through the night. But by that time I was pregnant again, and my growing belly wouldn't permit sleep either. When Big E was born, he was a much easier baby, and I began to get a little more sleep. Four hours at a time instead of three. But it helped. By the time he was sleeping though the night, C was dealing with night terrors and toddler fears. Again, no sleep.
And then Baby E came along. He is the calmest of my babies, but he still isn't sleeping though the night and likely won't for at least three more months. Which means that for nearly five years we have been running on 3-4 hour stretches of sleep.
That is tired. That is exhaustion.
On those evenings when I am more tired than usual, when my bones ache and my eyes won't stay open, my mind wanders to the rest of heaven. I wonder what it will be like to feel completely rested. I imagine it will feel the exact opposite of what I feel now. Fatigue and exhaustion will be replaced with energy and excitement. And the thought of that always makes me smile.
People tell me it is a temporary tired. One day rest will come easier. I hope this is true.
But until then, if we are talking and you see my eyes glaze over, it isn't rudeness, it's sleepiness. Feel free to hand me a cup of coffee or point me toward the closest couch and please know, it isn't personal! :)