21 Reasons Moms Aren't Sleeping

by Toni Hammer
Originally Published: 
South_agency / iStock

What’s up with everyone telling moms to sleep? When we’re pregnant, we’re told to sleep because once the baby comes we won’t be getting any rest for years. When our baby is born, we’re told to sleep while the baby sleeps. It’s a great idea, and I’m a big fan of sleep, but it just ain’t gonna happen. Here are 21 reasons why moms aren’t sleeping despite their best intentions:

1. They’re up late worrying.

Moms could be worrying about what to make for dinner the next day, how they’re going to pay the water bill next month, or about their kid’s grades. The worries vary in intensity, but they all keep mom from sleeping.

2. They drank coffee at 4 p.m.

It always seems so innocuous. You’re tired and need a little afternoon pick-me-up so you pick up a cup o’ joe. Next thing you know it’s 1 a.m. and you’ve counted approximately nine million sheep.

3. They’re doing laundry.

If we’re sleeping, we’re not washing or drying or folding or putting away-ing. And it’s easier to do laundry when everyone else is asleep because it means they’re not giving us more clothes to wash every 7 seconds.

4. They’re cleaning.

Sometimes there’s just not enough time during daylight hours to sweep and mop the floor or clean out the refrigerator, so you gotta get it done during the dark hours.

5. They’re organizing. It’s happened to all of us, right?

You’re in bed, almost asleep, and suddenly you get the most amazing idea to reorganize your pantry or linen closet. You get a surge of excitement and rush to the kitchen or bathroom to start pulling everything off the shelves.

6. They’re watching shows on Netflix.

Something with swearing, and violence, and sex, and zero animated happy characters or songs. Something that reminds them they’re adults.

7. They’re finishing their kid’s science fair project.

Not that any of us do that. No no.

8. They’re meal planning for the week.

It’s easier to do this at night than it is to do at 7 p.m. on a Wednesday night with the freezer wide open and your kids scarfing down dry cereal.

9. They’re planning an imaginary vacation.

Sometimes the only way to relax after a long day of mom-ing is to close your eyes and pretend that any day now you’re getting on a cruise ship and leaving your family behind for a few days. You can almost smell the salty sea air.

10. They’re buying shit on Amazon Prime.

Retail therapy is the best therapy.

11. They’re looking at Pinterest.

Sure, the only time they have to scrub the toilet is at 11 p.m., but for some reason they think that they’ll have plenty of time to do the 700 crafts they’re pinning like a mad woman because they’re just so cute.

12. They’re catching up on emails and social media.

It’s really difficult to tell Aunt Erma you can make it to her 70th birthday party with a baby on your hip and a toddler shoving Cheerios up their nose.

13. They’re eating junk food.

That is just for us. That we don’t have to share. That we can just enjoy by ourselves without having to hide it. Freedom tastes amazing.

14. We’re talking to our partner.

And not just about what little Jimmy did at school today but really talking, about real stuff, with an adult who understands and loves us.

15. They’re going over the day’s events.

What could I have done better? Am I getting through to the kids? How can I better sneak candy without them noticing?

16. They’re cutting coupons.

I’m a former extreme couponer, and let me tell you, that stuff is well worth the time, but it is a lot of time.

17. They’re taking a shower.

Motherhood is smelly, and sometimes the only time to wash off the stank is when we should be sleeping.

18. They’re exercising.

Namaste, insomnia.

19. They’re enjoying the silence.

Hear that? The sound of absolutely no one whining or crying or pulling on you or needing you for anything at all? That is a sound to savor.

20. They’re catching up on the news.

From celebrity gossip to major world events, sometimes we have to remind ourselves that the world is much bigger than the four walls we live in.

21. We’re pampering ourselves.

It could be a home manicure or a face mask or just clipping our toenails, but I’d trade five minutes of sleep for feeling like a human any day.

There’s nothing wrong with friends and family telling moms to sleep when they can. It’s fantastic advice, but sometimes it’s just not practical. Now pass the potato chips and the remote, please.

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