Some Mammahood Days Are Really Disorientating

Posted on Nov 6 2012 - 10:43pm by megganmamma
Simon and Joshi passed out on the Sofa at 10am on Saturday morning

Simon and Joshi passed out on the Sofa at 10am on Saturday morning

No matter how bad you think you have it, there’s always someone worse off than you. I know of one mamma whose little baby just didn’t sleep much at all. She could often be found wandering the streets at all hours of the night, carrying her crying baby in a sling.  There was only so much walking that mamma could do, so when her feet simply wouldn’t carry them anymore she’d take refuge in the swing so it wasn’t unusual for them to be sitting on a swing in a park at 3am, both absolutely exhausted.   When I hear stories like that I really feel for those mammas. Sometimes it’s really not easy, the schedule mammahood puts you on it can be really quite disorientating. Honestly, it can be hard to tell the difference between day and night sometimes, especially if you find that your only way to get some sleep is to sleep when your baby sleeps, irrespective of the time of day.

Last Saturday for example … I’d had a total of 4 and a half hours of sleep by the time Joshi woke at 4:30am for a feed, simply because I really wasn’t tired enough to sleep until 12pm the night before. By 5am, after I’d taken him to the potty and fed him, Joshi was sound asleep again … but I was wide awake. Instead of lying in bed counting sheep, I decided to seize the moment and get my yoga and meditation practice in before sunrise. So I did a round of Padma Sadhana (a very beautiful series of yoga poses which you learn on some of the Art Of Living courses) followed by sudarshan kriya and sahaj samadhi meditation. It was fabulous – 1 and a half hours of totally uninterrupted sadhana. Wow. Luxury. At 6:30am when Joshi woke up, I was still in another world, soaking up the after effects of my practice.

And then, well, here’s how things went for the rest of the day …

6:35am – Joshi’s wide awake and wants to play, while I’m starting to get sleepy rather suddenly. And then boom, I’m feeling really tired. I now sooooo want to rest but there’ so no chance of that happening unless I wake up Simon so that he can look after Joshi. So for the next half hour I make several unsuccessful attempts to wake Simon. He’s out for the count. And Joshi is scrambling all over the bed. The more energetic Joshi becomes the more tired I get. After 20 minutes I’m wondering where the match sticks are coz can barely keep my eyes open. Joshi’s now crawling all over the bed and I’m having to catch him over and over again to save him from falling off the edge. He’s also pulling himself up to standing on the headboard and squealing with glee as he does his funny little dance there. Lots of noise at this stage, but still Simon sleeps soundly.

7.05am – Wow. I finally manage to wake Simon. Thank God. As he takes over I close my eyes, with an enormous amount of gratitude oozing out of every part of me. Back to sleep I go. Ahhhhhhh.

9:55am – I wake up from a dream in which I’m fast asleep with Joshi asleep on me in the ergo baby carrier. When I go through to the lounge I find Joshi and Simon fast asleep on the couch (Joshi sound asleep on Simon in the ergo baby carrier).

10:15am – Joshua wakes up. I take him off Simon and send Simon off to bed. For the next three hours I take care of Joshi – ECing him, playing with him, eating home-made avocado nori rolls together and tidying up all the mess almost as fast as he creates it. He’s pulling all the books off the book shelf and so the floor’s covered in books. We so need to move those books.

1:30pm – Simon finally wakes up and has a shower while I prepare lunch.

3.00pm – We decide to go and get some veges, so I grab a couple of nappy liners, (just in case), dress Joshi and we head for the nearest organic store. Everything’s going smoothly until the return journey home when Joshi decides he’s really not happy to be in the car for a moment longer. At this point he starts crying and nothing will calm him. The little tears are streaming down his cheeks with such intensity. It’s so hard to watch. It really breaks my heart. It’s only an eight minute drive home, but it feels like forever when Joshi’s crying. At this point I soooooo want to undo those straps and take him out of that car seat, especially coz I know that the moment I do he’ll stop crying.

4:30pm – We are home at last! By the time we get in we’re all hungry so it’s food time again. To carry our grumbling tummies over till dinner time I make hot rice pudding with rice, organic rice milk, pecan nuts, macadamias, cinnamon, cardamom, raisins and maple syrup. And then it’s time to start thinking about what’s for dinner and I’m thinking “What? Where on earth did the day go? All I’ve done is cook, eat, clean, buy a few groceries and take care of Joshi (oh, and do my practice) … and the day’s gone! It’s a fact – sometimes mammahood days are really disorientating, but you kind of get used to it and learn to flow with the go.  Thank God that Simon and I can play tag team.  Don’t know how I’d cope otherwise.

7 Comments so far. Feel free to join this conversation.

  1. katesurfs November 6, 2012 at 11:27 pm -

    How fitting, I’m reading this at 10:30pm… after putting the girls to sleep and falling asleep, myself, in the process. Art’s sleeping on the couch and will probably wake up in the next few hours and do the dishes in the middle of the night! You do get used to the random-ness and very soon, they will start sleeping through the night and you’ll feel like celebrating! Some days Art’s gone for over 12 hours and I have to be so careful to ration my energy on those days (making sure to do my sadhana immediately if both of them are asleep, or even if Margo is awake sometimes). Today he did a surf, work, surf sandwich, so I was on my own all day! I can’t imagine what single parents do!

    • megganmamma November 7, 2012 at 10:31 am -

      I never thought this before I became a parent but now I think those cultures where big families live under one roof have got something good going on! We’re just not meant to be raising our families in isolation, are we?! I also often wonder how single parents manage. Must be tough. I also can;t imagine how mums cope if they don’t meditate or do yoga or something … I really rely on the extra energy I get from those things and would be knackered without it.

      • janet November 7, 2012 at 11:24 am -

        Lovely , Its so nice to read your happenings as conveyed into a conversation ,well the little nuencieasand intimacies may not be conveyed otherwise.
        I agree extended families ,communes are to ease & share this monumental task of helping another being deveolp to their full potnial

  2. curiosikat November 8, 2012 at 2:01 pm -

    Well I think that sounds like an absolutely perfect day, Meggan! I am so envious of your capacity to practise yoga, despite the demands of parenthood. I rarely get the chance and my little one is now 18 months… But reading of your practise has inspired me, and I am going to do a tiny bit right now as the little one is actually asleep, which isn’t that common nowadays. I laughed at the bit about the books – ours went through that stage too, and we kept saying, oh, we’ve got to move those books off the bottom shelf before he trashes them completely, as he’d pull them off at least a few times a day. We never got round to moving them and now he’s done with that stage. Now he pulls out his animal book and turns the pages and makes the noises for the animals. So my advice on this one is not to bother moving the books, unless they’re really precious and getting trashed. 🙂 Kat xx

    • megganmamma November 8, 2012 at 5:18 pm -

      I’ve started practicing yoga when Joshi is awake now Kat. It’s the meditation that I can only do when he’s alseep, and although the yoga is not as focussed and meditative when Joshi’s scrambling around under me, I figure it’s better than nothing. There are so many times when I could just be sitting there and watching him, making sure he doesn’t get hurt when he falls, but instead of sitting I do a few poses, still watching him. To motivate myself I’ve laid my yoga mat out in the lounge and it just stays there permanently now. Somedays I just get to do downward dog, but again – better than nothing, hey!

      We moved the books! Actually we only moved them coz we decided to move the whole bookcase to another room. He’s since got really good at tearing the book covers to shreds. Little bundle of mischief and love. 🙂

      • katesurfs November 8, 2012 at 11:34 pm -

        I do yoga with Margo scrambling and jumping on me… and sometimes joining me on her own mat. Kalpana was telling me how the ancient yogis used to do yoga in caves with spiders and bugs crawling on them… she said it will increase your tapas, and toddlers are much cuter. Knowing that makes me feel better when I get body slammed while trying to do cobra. And, also, if you can do the asana bit while they’re awake, then you get longer to meditate when they’re asleep!

  3. megganmamma November 9, 2012 at 11:45 am -

    I totally agree Kate … yoga’s for when they’re awake, meditation when they’re asleep.

    Before Joshi started rolling I used to do my yoga with him on the change table right next to me. He loved watching and I’d include little fingers fluttering movements to lengthen his “I’m quite happy to be up here” time. Of course I could only do the standing asanas, but better than doing nothing at all. Infact it was usually in the morning that I’d do that and doing the standing asanas in the morning felt really good, energising, prepared me for the day ahead.

    Nice that Margo does it with you on her own mat!