To the Moms Still Awake

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Prolonged blinks, deep bags under your eyes, and an even deeper yawn… but at least no one needs you “right now.” You’ll be tired in the morning, there’s no doubt about it, and you’ll be tired most of the day through… but at least right now, in this moment, all is silent and peaceful.

You are a mom and you are awake.

The rest of the house sleeps peacefully, free to dream what they will. But not you. Oh, you could go to bed now as well, to be sure. You could have gone, two hours ago, and surrendered yourself to the restful nothingness, and been equally as peaceful. But you wouldn’t remember it in the morning.

You want to remember the silence.

And so the seconds turn to minutes, the minutes turn to hours, and before you realize it, Witching Hour has come and gone, and you know that if you don’t sleep soon, you will become a witch yourself. You don’t want that.

But you stay a few minutes more – in front of the TV, on the computer, writing, journaling, reading a book, having a snack, excercising, laying on the couch, thinking, listening to music, studying, learning a new skill, cooking, cleaning, painting… whatever you feel like.

These little- these brief moments of reflection, of clarity; of remembering who you are and what you’re all about at the end of a day where nothing at all is about you – these are the moments worth losing sleep for.

Because that’s not something you get to do anymore, ‘whatever you feel like’. No, such freedom is reserved for the childless and the irresponsible. Or the lucky ones; you remember there are some of those.

And so you stay, just a few minutes more. You will be tired, to be sure, and your family will not understand the deliberate abandonment of sleep. But you will smile when you’ve done what you set out to do, uninterrupted, untouched, and untethered. And you will feel your mind breathe a sigh of relief to find that you are still in there after all; that you are still you.

That you are still you.

And, above all, you will always remember the silence.

-Jen

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