“When does the ‘being tired’ phase end?”

My friend smiled impishly, “You mean it ends?”

From the day my kids were born, I have been tired – I have a feeling it will be like this for a long time. I don’t really mind it much because while yes, I lament about it, and on days that I drag my butt out of bed earlier than I wish I had to, I do complain, I know it just kind of comes with the territory. It’s just a fact that as a mom, you are constantly awake when the rest of the world is sleeping.

When your babies are hungry or feeling cold and insecure in their new worlds as newborns, they wake up in the middle of the night because they want to know that Mommy is there to attend to their needs. You feed them, rock them, and make them feel warm and comforted.

When they’re sick or teething, they up wake in the middle of the night looking for some comfort from the pain. You help take the “ouchies” away.

When there’s a monster under their bed or lurking in the shadows, they wake up in the middle of the night because they’re scared. You keep them safe and chase the monsters away.

When they’re anxious about starting a new experience like a new school, they wake up in the middle of the night or early the next day because they are afraid of what new adventures lies ahead. You assure them that everything will be OK.

When they bound into your bedroom at 5AM on a weekend morning, they’re up early because they’re bored. You help them pass time by snuggling and “watching” cartoons with them.

When they’re older and are out with their friends on their own, you’re awake because you worry that they are safe.

Even on days when they don’t wake up in the middle of the night, early the next morning, or are breaching curfew, you’re tired because you are doing everything that needs to be done – laundry, cleaning, packing lunches or taking time for yourself.

The day WILL come when you are no longer tired. By then, your children may be grown and living out on their own, and you may find yourself looking back to the “being tired phase” with a little bit of yearning. So, embrace every single wrinkle, every bag under the eye, every crazy hair day, and every single yawn and wear that Mommy badge proudly. It means that your children need you and not only are you a mom; you are THEIR mom.

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