I used to think that the fact that having my children spaced out meant that I would be less tired when I had a fourth and fifth baby. I thought having older children to help out would make things easier.
When Gabriel was born, only Jean-Alexandre was in school. Dominic was in pre-school, but that hardly counts. I had three children under 5. But I still had more energy and was less tired than I have been with Nicolas. Even with Marc being away for 5 months. Up until a few days ago, I have been telling myself that this is likely because I am getting older and therefore must have less energy. Or something. Of course there is the accumulated fatigue and the endless migraines that I have been having since mid-pregnancy and which in the past week or two have become less frequent, but I still wondered why I am so tired and lacking in will-power and energy this time around. Especially since Dominic at 8, and Jean-Alexandre at 13 are more than old enough to be helping out.
I asked the mother of one of the girls in Gabriel's pre-school class who has just had her fifth, if she had noticed a difference this time around. I was sure she'd be even more tired than me, as her children are much closer in age and she has 4 pre-schoolers. To my surprise she said no, she hadn't noticed any difference.
And then, pondering apon that mystery later in the day, it hit me. I am likely more tired this time around, because my children are older. When I had Gabriel, only Jean-Alexandre had homework and soccer. The others required supervision and extra care, but I didn't have to take them anywhere in the evening, and none of it was very long. I also put them to bed early. Even Jean-Alexandre was in bed by 8:30 or 9:00. Which means I was in bed by 9:30 or 10.
I now have 4 children in soccer, either on weeknights, or weekend mornings. We get home late. We often eat late. The kids go to bed late, which means I go to bed later, and I still have to get up at 6:30 in the morning to wake every one up. When I go to bed at night, I hit the pillow and 5 minutes later I am out cold. (Poor desperate husband) Even weekends are always busy, and I rarely get to sleep early. Only getting 6-7 hours of interupted sleep every night for the past 2 years has taken it's toll...
I started writing this at 9:30 pm. I could have gone to bed instead. All the children except for Jean-Alexandre are in bed. Even Nicky is sleeping. He has started to go to bed early recently. (Since he only naps once or twice a day). It is now ten minutes to 10. I have to get up early tommorrow for a soccer tournament. (Dominic's) So now would be the perfect opportunity to get a good night's sleep. But I sit here writing instead. Because this is the only personal time I have to myself.
I'm going to go now. And I am going to try to make an effort ot be more organised,s o I can get more sleep at night. And be less tired. And get more done. And not have to rely on coffee to get through the afternoon.
Is there a patron saint of tired people?