**Originally posted Jun 30, 2010**

Mothers, I have learned, are tired.  I have never met one that is not.  I have met mother’s who have said they feel great because they finally got a good nights sleep, but that is one night and the next day, she’s tired again.  The level of tired seems to be proportionate to the number, age and closeness of the birth of her children.  And the age of the mother is a factor.  We spring chickens wear out by 8:30… am. But what can we blame being a tired mom on?

moms are tired, this tired tale examines why
I am tired all the time.  All day, all night, drunk or sober, awake or asleep, I am tired.  I don’t know why.  I get, on average, the required 2 hours of sleep a night.  That should be plenty for taking care of three small children.  Especially loving, calm, listening children like mine.  My days are easy and my nights are the envy of strange people everywhere.

So I have started looking at alternative excuses for my exhaustion.  It could be my thyroid is out of whack but I am already on such a high dose of medication that I hardy need my morning Kahlua anymore.  Plus, I have had it checked and I am in the “normal” range.  One of the few places I go where I am normal.

It could be my diet.

Let’s see.  A typical day?

Breakfast is my barely legal dose of thyroid pill, followed one hour later by my coffee, the non- spiked version.  I might find time to throw a few eggs in a pan, fry them up, and watch them get cold while I break up a fight, wipe a nose or comfort a fall – push.

Lunch is a few chicken nuggets my kids left on the plate – and by plate I mean floor.  Don’t judge, I have five seconds!  I can sometimes find time to take the lid off of last nights dinner, smell it to make sure it was last nights dinner, put it in the microwave, hit the button, get sidetracked with a crying child, pooping child or pooped child, and forget about it.

Some days I do manage a piece of Velveeta cheese, fiber bar and some carrot sticks.  I have to share everything I get, you know, but I do get some of it.

Dinner is usually a well- planned, balanced meal that I have slaved over my Crock Pot or Pampered Chef cooker to create.  I do actually get to sit down for dinner. After I get everyone else’s dinner, napkins, drinks, forks, forks to replace the ones that were thrown at a sister’s head, whatever condiment requested and yell at the kids for yelling at the dinner table.  Usually, by the time I sit down, I eat alone as everyone else is finished and left barely eaten plates of food to find a reason to ask for a snack.

And by “eat” I mean I get to take a bite, a sip of tea – Long Island – and attempt to take another bite when a child comes to crawl on my lap,  a fight breaks out, and/ or someone needs something that I, being the only adult in this house with arms, legs and common sense, can provide for them.

You would think, by this daytime diet, I would be the hot, sexy, thin envy of the neighborhood.  Not to  worry.  I feed my demanding fat cells with the late night binge of ice cream, cottage cheese and Bud Light.  They do the happy dance – ripple – and are all forgiving of my daily neglect.

So, obviously, my diet does not contribute to my lack of energy at all.  I mean, come on, that’s like saying that sex contributes to pregnancy.  Totally ludicrous.

I am leaning more towards the fact that five solid years of pregnancy, infants, breastfeeding and diaper failures has trained my insomnia to be a specimen to be reckoned with.  Instead of my internal clock telling me that the last little minion has retired for the night…  usually around 11pm – hence the sugar massacre at about that time, it tells me “WOOOHOOOO – time aloooonnnneeeee!  Let’s paaarrttttaaaayyyyy!!!!”

Now, I don’t know if you have ever met insomnia, and I don’t know if the insomnia you met was soooo… what’s the word…  unrelenting?  punishing?  demanding?… but mine is a bitch.  Useless to fight but fights dirty herself.  Mine takes my tired eyes,  props them open with toothpicks and pours me a drink.  She puts my brain on a treadmill, an oreo in my hand and the TV on the most interesting shows of the day…  that Chelsea Handler… my kind of smart- ass.

I have attempted home made remedies for my sleeplessness but she even outlasts proof…  in a bottle, in a glass, on ice, neat… any proof.  I can’t take sleeping pills because the judge said so plus I might need to be lucid should – when – one of my children need me in the middle of the night, I can stumble to their rooms loudly, waking at least one other at the same time.

So, I have decided to make friends with my nemeses.  Keep my enemy closer, shall we say.  I have decided to thwart her attempts to bring me down and  be constructive during these late hours.  I’ll erase 75 of the 80 DVR’d Wow Wow Wubzzy’s,  read Fitness Magazine and again argue that airbrushing should allowed in real life, and come up with new threats to try out on my children the next day.  Don’t worry, I will still ignore my house work, some things are just sacred!

I will eventually fall into a restless sleep, counting the hours until one of my children comes in and asks “Mommy, are you awake?”  And I will get up and do it all again.

But one day – one day, I will kick my insomnia to the curb, take back my counting sheep and claim victory over mind numbing late night activities.

But not today.  Today I am just too tired.