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"I am so freaking tired, and I don't even have a baby as an excuse."

The other day, my five-year-old was furious at me for something.

“I’m going to send you to your room!” he yelled. “You’re going to have to stay there, all by yourself, for four hours, and you can’t come out!”

If only he had followed through with the punishment.

I am tired. So freaking tired. I can’t remember the last time I got eight hours’ sleep. Certainly not eight hours in a row.

I once read somewhere that for every hour short of eight hours’ sleep you get, you lose a point off your IQ. Apparently it accumulates, night after night. I’m surprised I can even spell IQ anymore.

Do you know what it feels like to wake up in the morning, refreshed and relaxed, ready to bounce out of bed and face whatever the day holds? My kids do. Ask them. Me, no idea.

I don’t even have a newborn as an excuse. So why am I so tired?

Kids can disrupt your sleep, well beyond babyhood. They may be capable of sleeping through the night, but that doesn’t mean they will. My kids may get up at 2am to tell me something vitally important about their nose being full of snot or the sky being dark. They may get up at 3am so they can stagger around and find a pile of toys to vomit on. They will definitely get up at 5.30am so they can come into my bed and spend an hour or two “snuggling” with me, stretching out so that I’m clinging to the edge of the bed, with no hope of falling back to sleep.

"Mum, Mum, my nose is full of snot!" Photo via iStock

Kids are physically exhausting. They race around dangerously close to roads, beg you to play tag with them and climb on top of playhouses they can't climb down from. They need to be chauffeured to birthday parties and playgrounds and gymnastics classes. My daughter finds that travelling in a warm car makes her irresistibly sleepy. Me too. I glance at her peacefully snoozing in my rear-view mirror and sigh with envy.

Kids are mentally exhausting. My son interrogates me with an endless stream of questions. "How far is to the moon?" "Which of your friends do you like the least?" "What are sexual references?" Um...

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I'm working harder than ever. I know I'm lucky to be able to work from home, so I feel like I have to prove I can do my job at least as well as anyone else. After my kids have gone to bed each night, I sit down at the computer and do another couple of hours' work.

I am so tired that when I get up in the morning and realise I've run out of coffee, I can feel tears pricking my eyes. Why is life so unfair? I stare at a loaf of rye bread and realise I don't have the energy to slice it. Slicing bread is just too hard.

I'm convinced that sleep deprivation has ruined my short-term memory. I had to get a new PIN for my credit card because not only did I forget the number, I forgot where I'd written it down. I think I actually did that twice. Or maybe more.

I can never seem to remember who's dead and who's not. A friend posted something on Facebook the other day about Joe Cocker's death and I felt momentarily sad... just as sad as I'd felt a year earlier when I first heard he died.

Wakey, wakey! Rise and shine! Or not. Photo via iStock

I know I'm not the only sleep-deprived mother out there. I know there are plenty of other mums combining work and kids and everything else in life, finding extra hours in the day by taking them out of the night... having it all, except a decent sleep.

I'm not complaining. I love that I can work and still spend time with my kids. I love that my kids still want to play with me and snuggle in my bed.

I just want to know it gets a bit easier. I want to know that kids start enjoying their sleep-ins, too. I want to know that I won't always feel this tired.

Oh yeah, and I want to be sent to my room. Please.

Do you feel like you get enough sleep?

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