Lucky Saddle is tired. Very tired. And unfortunately not as a result of intense cycling or fitness activities, or wild partying, no, it’s all down to the kid. And his bloody teeth.
You see, lovely, happy, babbling Jude is an absolute delight during the day, when he is hanging out with his friends at nursery, or with my mum when we are at work, but as soon as midnight strikes, he turns into something else. Gone is the smiley little cute bundle of joy, instead replaced by a deafening little ‘s*%t’, with a cry that resonates throughout the house.
Last night was pretty bad. Awful in fact. I had a total of 40mins in bed before those flaming teeth kicked in again, that’s just teasing… giving me hope that there will be a full night’s sleep. Cruel.
The night consisted of pushing the pram round the kitchen table in a complete daze, humming ‘twinkle twinkle shitty star’, with Peppa shitty pig blurting out from the sitting room. It was quite surreal. We also went in the garden to see if we could ‘see any birds’ – usually a winning distraction but strangely, there were no birds out at 4am?? Why?? Well they were asleep of course, along with the rest of the bloody world…. He didn’t get it.
It’s not Jude’s fault, he is obviously in pain, and I wish I could take the pain for him (although last time I said that I got his hand, foot and mouth disease), but it’s pretty tiring. Especially when you have to drag your butt and heavy eye lids into the office, and pretend you are really awake and ready for a productive day…
But that’s the modern world for many mums; it’s tough, and I know I am not alone. Us mums are too hard on ourselves, we strive to be the perfect mum, maintain the perfect home, be outstanding at work every day, and keep those all-important relationships with partners, friends and family going. Oh, and trying to keep fit and healthy amongst all of this.
I for one find it so much harder to get motivated to exercise when I’ve had a rough night or two. Cycling to work with just a couple of hours of sleep is quite frankly exhausting, the muscles don’t respond well, and those niggly recurring aches and pains come back. For me it’s the knees. When I don’t sleep, my knees don’t have time to repair themselves and they ache. The signs of ageing I know.
I also find my diet goes completely out of control. Cravings for coffee, sweets, carbs, cheese and wine, altogether, is on a much higher level than normal. I crave that sugar high to get me through the day, before I get hit by that slump again, it’s a vicious cycle. Last night, during the 100 laps of the kitchen table at 2am, I consumed 2, yes 2 hot cross buns, and a cup of tea. I’m not sure why, it’s almost like the body was saying if you can’t sleep then why not eat instead? Lethal.
So, I started to read about sleep deprivation, and what it does to the body over a period of time, and what I read was scary yet fascinating. According to many studies, reaction times decrease and performance on tasks like driving declines. Cognitive function suffers too. It becomes harder to make decisions and the memory is impaired (god help me, I am the most forgetful and indecisive person ever) Plus, sleeplessness increases sensitivity to pain, which means your workout feels all the harder even when you aren’t working as hard as usual.
The article was really interesting, and I’m sure I would have found out a lot more, if I hadn’t fallen asleep by page 3.
So reading this blog back to myself, it comes across a little downbeat and negative especially when compared to my usual stories; however this is reality, and for many people I know… Yet, on a positive note, Jude won’t be growing teeth forever; only into his 20’s / 30’s if he’s anything like me with wisdom teeth (I am not that far off 20’s before anyone comments). And when he does sleep through, it feels so wonderful – like a real treat in life, something that many of us (and I used to) take for granted.
And then we are very nearly into SPRING!!!! Everything is so much easier with lighter mornings and evenings, the birds sing (and usually at 4am in the morning – bet Jude can’t wait for that), and the motivation to pound the streets again and rack up the miles in the saddle comes back… I can’t bloody wait.
But until then, I am going to do my best to just keep ‘ticking over’… and not put too much pressure on myself… apart from getting a personal record at the Eastleigh 10k next month, and the 100km ride around the Isle of Wight in May of course.. oh and the Ride 100 if I get a place this year…
So for all the mums out there working hard and juggling life. Go pour yourself a double G&T and join me is raising a glass to us. Because quite frankly, we are bloody brilliant.