I have been struck by a severe case of insomnia. A combination of late pregnancy, concerns about a friend with terminal cancer and his family, and a general sense of too many things on my mind have led to hours in the night where I lie awake, mind spinning, wishing for the rest I so desperately need. The downsides of this are that I am tired all the time, and I am finding myself with stress/exhaustion migraines far more often than is normal for me (which is pretty frequent as it is, so I don’t exactly welcome the extras.)
This morning I woke at four and found myself unable to fall back asleep. After tossing and turning for an hour, I decided to get up and grab some much needed quiet time in the house without kids needing me. I got up, showered, had some warmed up rice with cinnamon and brown sugar (yum!) and made coffee. I poured my hot coffee, sat down to drink it, and Mattea woke up. She often has nightmares in the early morning and sleeps restlessly for an hour or so, so I went to settle her back to sleep. She dozed off again after a cuddle and some singing and I went back to my coffee. I sat down and started my show and Mattea woke up. Sean brought her down to me and went back to bed, and Mattea and I sat on the couch together wrapped in her quilt.
She did not sleep. I could have been frustrated, or felt angry. Perhaps it was my exhaustion that kept me from feeling anything negative, or perhaps it was simply a moment of grace that a tired mama and baby needed. I turned on my salt lamp for a bit of gentle light, and we sang and watched the sky change colour together. Mattea, this baby who has blossomed into a comedian like her dad, who loves to make people laugh, who asks for huggle cuggles and says “Mommy, I gove you too much” as she is flinging her chubby arms around my neck. Mattea, who plays for hours by herself constructing elaborate fantasy scenarios. Mattea, who doesn’t often get my undivided attention because there are others vying for it constantly. She informed me that she won’t be able to nurse the baby because her “nickles” aren’t big enough, and that his nickname should be Pinky Winky, except when he poops, at which point we should add “stinky” to the end. We had a two and a half hour cuggle, her and I, and we laughed, and watched the wonder of another day begin.
And I was thankful, because there is no better moment than this.