Whenever we tell someone that we’re expecting, we almost always get the “Congratulations, that’s wonderful” and sometimes the “Was this planned?” responses. Frankly, we’re getting used to it, since it’s starting to be a little hard to deny the fact that Beta is growing bigger all the time as evidenced by the shrinking number of clothes in Rhiannon’s closet that are still wearable. Then, at least in my experiences, anyone with children of their own gets very serious, looks me straight in the eye, and says “Get all the sleep you can now.” After that, they might chuckle about how you won’t get a good night’s rest for at least another 18 years or something, but the tone that the advice is offered in scares me.
It feels a little like in the movies, when the villains are in the house and the damsel-in-distress manages to dial 911, gets cut off, and then the police call back. She is forced to make up a story about how the neighbor’s dog knocked over a trash can and scared but everything is fine while thugs with guns threaten her. Maybe thugs with guns isn’t a good metaphor for children, but the fear and urgency is there all the same.
I know that everyone understands you can’t store up sleep over the long term in the same way you can make a rainy day fund or buy a back-supply of paper towels when they go on sale. I almost feel like I should take a video camera and film a few minutes of us sleeping in a weekend, just to watch in a few months and say, “Remember those days?”
Is it really that bad, or am I just imagining the desperation that seeps to the surface for those few brief seconds?