Wherefore art thou sleep?
Why sleep eludes, when love abounds
Just recently, the twice and sometimes thrice nightly baby wakings have been wearing a little thin. I never thought I’d say it, but if only I could just get a solid block of sleep until, say, 4am.... I swear I’d feel like a new woman. Yes... 4am. It may seem absurd to all those without children that a wake up time as ungodly as this could ever be classed as ‘good’. But believe me, when the maximum you can get is 1 to 2 hours in any one stint, anything is a bonus. For the longest time, I have worried about the potential health repercussions of this dire sleep situation. I can feel it taking it’s toll on everything from my energy levels, to my concentration, and even my ability to eat sensibly. The latter issue is something I never anticipated, given that I did in my former, child free life, train as a nutritionist. The caffeine and sugar filled sustenance that punctuates my day goes against all better judgment and knowledge, but the reality is, sleep deprivation hampers a large proportion of your ability to make informed choices. When you’re only firing on one cylinder (at best), and parental responsibility requires you to do a nursery run at 7.30 am, with only a handful of Zzzz’s in your back pocket, you’ll do anything to get your head in the zone. A friend of mine who happens to be a police officer once told me that sleep deprivation can be as detrimental as alcohol to concentration on the road, yet with no law in place to prevent the mother who’s been up all night from getting behind a wheel, the responsibility is entirely ours to make sure we are ‘compus mentis’. And this, unfortunately for my nutrition status, means quick fix, hard hitting energy. If its a choice between feeling 'A ok' (even if for the half hour drive round trip) or sapping my already depleted zinc stores, I pick the former. Hopefully the vitamins will make up for it! I continually try to make myself feel better about this rather sore sleep subject, rolling off all manner of ‘it wont be forever’ type assurances, that are probably more for my benefit than any poor sap on the receiving end of my nocturnal gripes. Given the commitment to positivity, I was overjoyed with the new research by @keeleuniversity indicating that people who sleep for more than eight hours each night have - I quote - ‘a greater mortality and cardiovascular risk than those who sleep for seven hours or fewer.’ YES! Couple this new information with @emilyjane.clark’s closing summary to my all time favourite read - SLEEP IS FOR THE WEAK - and I am already feeling a whole lot better about the inevitability of not sleeping for the foreseeable future. ..‘Cherish these tiring times my friends, because all too soon the midnight hugs, snuggly pyjama days, the glory of that frst sip of coffee in the morning, the feel of a sleeping baby on your chest will be nothing but a distant memory.’ Obviously, if your child is screeching, thrashing and screaming at 2am (as they do!) as opposed to snuggling cutely on your chest, it might seem slightly less of a moment to be cherished. However, rest assured, the reliable rose tint of time will probably suffice to dilute the true, painful memory of even these most rude and regular of awakenings..In the meantime, we’ll focus on @keeleuniversity’s findings, and how apt it is that the labors of unconditonal love (from a sleepless night perspective) might ultimately be what bolsters and enriches our heart to it’s full health potential. As if we didn’t know that already!’