Melanie Darnell, a mom of three, completed a project that anyone with children can relate to: she filmed herself trying to sleep for an entire night. As you can imagine, her three kiddos played a hand in keeping the hours of actual shuteye to a minimum. And although the CDC and the National Insitute of Health doesn't recommend cosleeping with infants for safety reasons, we feel for this mama.
She posted the video on Instagram, which perfectly explained how you never get a break from motherhood.
"Parenting doesn't end when the sun goes down. I want to parent at night the same way I parent during the day. You have two nighttime parenting goals (1) get sufficient rest yourself and (2) meet the nutritional and emotional needs of your child," she said. "It's a tough balance. Realizing that the last sweet hours of restful darkness are almost over. The 4 a.m. wake-up call is especially excruciating. Still, we haul ourselves out of bed with bleary eyes and pull our babies in close."
And even though not getting enough sleep can totally change the course of your day — not to mention your mood — Melanie cherishes those restless nights.
"In those quiet, dark hours, the lack of distraction can actually be quite calming and refreshing. A baby's needs tend to be simple: to be held and fed. Mothers are experts at both of those things, and the ability to so completely meet the needs of our amazing baby is profoundly satisfying."
Melanie encourages moms to realize they're not alone if they find their eyes fluttering in the afternoon.
"During these moments let's think of all of the other parents that are up with their babies at the very same middle-of-the-night moment and take comfort in the thought of each of us cradling our babies in the dark of our homes, together in shared experience. Rather than feeling isolated and exhausted, we can feel connected to the other tired mothers that are also awake."
Although Melanie knows how long those nights can seem, it'll go by in the blink of an eye.
"So, to all of the tired mothers out there, breathe in and breathe out. These days are intense but short-lived. Both you and baby will be sleeping more soundly before long. For now, cuddle your babies, nurse them and love them no matter what time the clock says. The baby you rock tonight someday may have the opportunity to be gazing at the stars while holding a sweet baby of her own."