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The Only One Awake

I’m sitting here alone at 2:47am. It’s an all too familiar scene, swaying in the dark to the blood-curdling sound of my screaming baby. But for once I’m thinking, what if I’m not the only one awake?

Maybe I’m not the only one awake at 2:47 who feels like a complete failure because she can’t get her own child to sleep. Maybe I’m not the only one with tears streaming down my face thinking, is this lovely little being trying to end me?

Maybe I’m not the only one losing motivation with every pick up and put down. And whose hope things will change is dwindling with each check-in that passes. Or whose resentment is growing with every loving hush and gentle pat.

Maybe I’m not the only one whose dreams of co-sleeping in bohemian bliss were squashed. Not the only who tried all the “gentle” sleep training techniques and failed at Crying It Out. Or who read countless sleep books, only to feel more lost than before.

Maybe I’m not the only one who wants to scream when yet another person says that someday soon I’ll miss these precious moments. Not the only one who cringes every time a well-meaning in-law asks how the baby is sleeping. Or the only one who has considered lying about it.

Maybe I’m not the only one who clenches her jaw when a co-worker says he’s so tired from that 7am Pilates class. Not the only one sick to my stomach with unsolicited advice, talk of “tough love” and articles on “self soothing.”

Maybe I’m not the only one who can’t take another joke about sleep deprivation because my laughter so easily turns into sobs. Not the only one who dreads the sun going down and who gets sweaty, anxious palms every night at 7pm.

What if I’m not the only one who has poured water into her cereal and put trash in the hamper? I’m exhausted and delirious and lonely, but I’ll pry my eyes open for another round of lullabies. Because maybe, just maybe, I’m not the only one awake.

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