Lack of sleep is like a poison.
Like all new moms the sleep deprivation kicked in hard when the triplets were born. It was a whole new level of exhaustion and the culprit of my postpartum depression and anxiety.
One night when the babies were just weeks old. I had just finished nursing Charlize. I cradled her in my arms and dosed off. And by dosed off I mean, I fell into a deep hard sleep.
Suddenly, frantically, I woke up, shouting “we forgot to feed the babies.” I startled Ryan as I jumped out of bed without even realizing I had Charlize in my arms. I remember Ryan shouting “Babe. No!” as if he was watching a slow motion film. Fortunately, Charlize was cradled in my left arm so she slipped right into the bed, but if she was in my right arm, she would have fallen on the floor. My sleep deprivation put me into a delirium. I was exhausted all the time. This moment told me lies about who I was early on as a new Mom and instilled fear in my heart.
Sleep is a need. It is medicine to our soul. It helps us stay healthy. I was not prepared for the lack of sleep that would intrude my being and ruin my functionality as a Mom. It heightened my anxiety and put me into a depression. I wanted to be in bed all day, but I couldn’t. I was a Mom to three tiny newborns who needed me. I felt so incapable.
I had no clue what I was doing. The triplets suffered from GERD, which didn’t help. Feedings required extra help and individual attention. I often wondered how God could entrust me with all 3 of them. I hated feeling like I needed help, like I couldn’t be a mother on my own. But what I learned is that it takes a village to be a good mom. I needed to ask for help. I needed to go on meds to help me function. I needed a Mommy helper. I needed to do things that would help me get through such a hard season.
My babies are toddlers now and I can tell you, I still need my sleep. If I am not getting the sleep I need I turn into a monster. I have less patience and am sometimes reminded of all the lies I believed about myself back when my babes were newborns. However, what I’m reminded of more than anything, is that, it takes a village and it’s okay to ask for help.