I used to say that "sleep was where I was a princess," but those were the days before I had three incredibly charming children who can't stop playing and go the sh!t to sleep.
Now, I know part of it is age-related; at 3, 5, and 11, kids don't simply go snugly into that good night like "some babies" (who were not my own) do. In fact, until recently, I thought "sleep like a baby" was a sarcastic way to say, "not sleep at all, ever, no matter what."
Bedtime, though, if a new kindergartner and middle schooler weren't enough changes to go through, has gone from being a spectator sport to a super epic battle royale.
At this point, I can't tell who's winning.
I say that because I just went and took a nap for the first time in 10 years and actually fell asleep, rather than lay there thinking of all the things I *should* be doing, like microwaving peeps or brushing the cat or, really, anything but laying down.
This means Mama's tired. It also means Mama's stressed out.
Why? What could make this mommy want her vodka so much?
The epic battle of the bedtimes.
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It doesn't matter when we start winding down the night, doesn't matter how much they've been running around like puppies in the backyard, doesn't matter how soothing we act, or how much white noise there is, the kids do not want to go to sleep.
Bedtime, which once took 30 minutes on a bad day, has stretched into an epic 3-hour battle. Someone wants a drink. Or a blankie. Or the sun to go down. Or the sun to come back up. Or the answer to the Fibonacci equation.
We've been patient and yelled. We've given in and we've stayed firm. In the end, we're all tired, exhausted, and a little more weary for the wear.
And I know that some day, in the not-so-distant future, I will miss the days in which lying down with Mommy makes things better. I'll long for the snuggles and the giggles and thumping and bumping of tiny feet as they pad to and from each other's room.
And that is why, even when I am exhausted and at the edge of my rope, I know I will survive these moments.