4am

I’m sitting here at 4am with a sleeping 3 week old on my chest. He has a sad little cold and stuffy nose. Every time I put him down on his back it wakes him. I’d be pissed too if my nose was stuffy and I couldn’t make it go away with some afrin. It’s so weird to think that three weeks ago today he was still curled up in my belly. He seems big to me right now laying here. He was 7 lbs, 11 oz at birth and I assume he is closing in on 8.5 lbs.

family

There is a sick almost two year old coughing in the room next to us who I’ve tried my best to keep away from the new one, but he wants to be all up in my business and his new brothers business at all times. So that’s tough. And he gave the new one his cold. Sigh.

And then there’s a demanding, opinionated 4 year old in my bed. A kid who slept through the night 12 + hours from 6 months until he was over 3 years old. I always said my kids would never be in my bed. But sleep wins and I was pregnant when this started getting bad and we crumbled and said screw it as long as everyone’s sleeping just get on in here.

My husband is downstairs on the couch so he can secure 4-5 hours of sleep. It’s one big party up in here. Man these first few weeks with a new baby are hard every single time. It’s a different kind of hard each time. The sleep deprivation is REAL and it’s draining. It took the biggest toll on me mentally the first time around no doubt. I was a hot mess in every sense. I didn’t know how to deal with the fatigue, the hormones, the breastfeeding. I was a complete and total disaster.

The second time was much more calm. I actually sort of forget those beginning months the second time. I know the anxiety wasn’t nearly as severe and though I did have trouble sleeping there was comfort in knowing it gets better and one day we will all sleep again. Louis was an easy baby. In almost every way he was easy. I actually don’t remember one thing about him being difficult.

The third time. Here we are. I’m still obsessing on sleep. I am a head case and really struggle with it, it seems that even when given opportunity I lay in bed wide awake, completely exhausted. I’m not sure I ever want to do this again. If we decide to have four children can someone please just hand me a 6 month old who has already figured out sleeping through the night?

But in all seriousness, what a gift this is. I look at these boys every night and can’t believe this is my reality. Is it too good to be true? In all of my post partum worry and anxiety- I find that what I’m most worried about is losing it all. What if something happens to one of my babies or me or my husband. I’ve found that the source of my anxiety is being afraid all of this will be taken away. I’m sure this is a common fear for new moms.  It’s the too good to be true mentality. Or maybe I’m just crazy.

As hard as it is at times- at 3am when sleep is nowhere to be found, or 3pm when all I want is an adult to swoop in and entertain Louis so I can get off patrol making sure he doesn’t hit or pull or scratch his newborn brother. Or to just come talk to me about, well anything other than power rangers. As hard as all of that feels, I know that this is it. This is the time we will look back and laugh at the crazy and miss it too. Glenn and I usually say it’s one big shit show here. I know we will miss the shit show one day. And no I don’t need moms of grown children to tell me how fast it goes or that I’ll miss it someday. Yes I know this. I understand how time works.

So this third time around, when the days get long and the patience is running low, I remember that this is what I signed up for, this is what I want most. This was one of my biggest dreams. The other day Glenn was talking about going back to school and I said that’s great-  I will support your hopes and dreams. (as long as Covance is paying for it… joke, kinda of) And then he asked me if I felt like my hopes and dreams had been put to the side and I said nope, they are all in this big old mini van either crying, sleeping or eating snacks. Because if they aren’t crying or sleeping in the car, you know it’s because they have a snack. And I’ll be happy to pursue my other dreams while holding a baby and losing insane amounts of sleep. For now.

momma

Comments

  1. Yes to all of this. It’s so hard and yet the greatest job I’ll ever, ever have. Each age is a privilege and in the midst of that shit show (because even at ages 17, 15 & 12 it’s still a shit show – a different sort of chaos certainly but a shit show nonetheless) I try so hard to pause and look around and cherish it. It’s an awesome thing we moms get to do.

    1. Lindsey Hein

      Thanks for reading Barb and for your insight here. I truly look up to you and how you parent (from what I see from the internets!! :)) I do look forward to the shit show of the teenage years but think maybe I’m most excited that I won’t need a babysitter if we want to go out to dinner… haha. Much love!

  2. The shit shows are the most rewarding! I have 6 kids! My oldest is 16, then 14, 11, my step kids are 13 and 10, and our youngest blended family baby is nearly 3. SO MUCH HARD. Sleep is important, yes, but it’s not everything. You know what everything is? Being connected to other humans. That’s what keeps us sane. 🙂 I love your podcast, Lindsey! You’ve got such a good heart, a sweet voice, and an ever-growing social media platform that I have no doubt will hold you up while you spread the good stuff. Hang in there! I will if you will!

    1. Lindsey Hein

      Definitely teared up reading this- “Hang in there, I will if you will” Thank you for the encouragement! AND thank you for listening to my podcast and sharing those kind thoughts- that motivates me to keep it up and keep working hard to make it better every week. Holy moly 6 kids- keep on rocking it- and I love what you say- sleep is important but being connected to other humans is more important… SO TRUE. I need that reminder sometimes and not just about my kids but about my adult relationships as well. XOXO!

  3. Hang in there lady. You are doing amazing. We had 3 kids in 17 months and I, too, was so exhausted I would lay awake at night stressed out about how I couldn’t sleep because a child would wake up in the next 25 minutes needing something. One of my favorite quotes is “In retrospect the years of struggle will strike you as the most beautiful of all.” and it’s so true. I love the stage we are in now (tweens) but the years of babyhood were a chaotic blessing that I would do again if I could rewind and replay. You are an awesome mom.

  4. Christina Campins-Schneider

    Oh the memories of non-sleep. As I was reading, I felt I could tag all 3 of my girls along with your boys. The first baby who slept through the night, the second who is a terror and rules the house and the 3rd special blessing that didn’t sleep through the night till she was 4! Yep! She was the only baby I allowed into my bed and she didn’t leave until she was 4! I know sleep deprivation, we all do, so my wish for you is that it passes quickly and that you continue journaling for yourself and all of us out here who love cheering for you from the sidelines. Even though the oldest is now 18 and we are college shopping, there is a whole new set of anxiety. And even though I hide it well, my house still looks like a mini Toys -R-Us when you come over unannounced ????. Just the other night as we sat around the dinner table my 18 yr old was describing how great summer camp was to her sisters. They don’t know it yet, but overnight summer camp is coming for Christmas. My 18 yo told them about the activities they could sign up for. Archery, hip hop, making baskets….to which my 8yo replyed ” I want to make baskets b/c I am a good shooter” ???? It’s these little gems we have to put in our memory banks for later.

  5. I don’t want other mom’s of older kids to tell me it goes by quickly, too. I know it does and some days I feel that and other days I’m just to plain exhausted to really care that that should be my reality. It is quite literally a shit show, sometimes. But you are right, the anxiety I have is about losing it all. I’d be devastated. And when I think about a future when Mark and I are old and gray and our babies have moved out and it is just the two of us I feel so utterly and completely sad. I can’t imagine us not being all together. And then sometimes all I want to do is be alone. It’s possible to love it desperately and hate it at the same time.

Add A Comment