Since having children, I have been pretty much permanently tired. I know I’m not the only one, I’m not sure I’ve ever met a refreshed, energised parent of young children. There have been a few times since Libby came along when I have reached a point of feeling close to exhaustion.
I was in hospital for several days before having both girls, as I was induced both times. The lack of sleep during induction meant that the snatched few hours here and there when I’d had the baby and come home felt like absolute bliss.
Then came the difficult times of working until 3 am most days just to make ends meet, being back up by 7 am with the girls on a good day. Then my husband’s accident threw another spanner in the works and the extra pressure took its toll on the way I felt.
It wasn’t until I finally managed to slow down, sleep a little more and relax occasionally that I realised what a difference it made. The NHS facts on lack of sleep make for really interesting reading. They mention the physical and long term effects of tiredness, including obesity, heart disease and decreased life expectancy.
They also mention the small things that I have really noticed. The lack of sleep – and probably the stress of the situation – was making me really grumpy. That’s never a good way to be when you’re a mum of young children. Especially when one of them is a threenager.
Since things calmed down a bit here, I’ve been getting on so much better with Libby. She is incredibly well behaved for her age and always has been. In my exhausted state I wasn’t coping well with her incessant talking though. It sounds ridiculous now, but I had a really short fuse with her because of it.
I also feel more able to exercise, and the idea of losing the weight I’ve put on since having children seems much more reasonable. I’ve treated myself to a nutribullet and I’m going to do my best to use that for one or two meals a day and cut out snacks.
I’ve also managed to find the time to run a bit more and do a 30 day abs challenge, much to the disgust of Donna from What the Redhead Said who reluctantly agreed to do it with me. Next week I hope to start swimming more regularly again.
This weekend, I’m even going on a proper night out, for the first time since having Libby. I always said that things would eventually get easier and I think it is finally happening. I’m looking forward to the next chapter of our lives and hoping that this isn’t a momentary blip and things really are starting to improve.