Before I had kids, I imagined myself as a mom who wakes up before her kids. I would wake up at 5:30 am, work out, get ready and eat breakfast, before any of my children had a chance to yell “Mommy.” And then I had kids. As it turns out, my kids do not enjoy sleeping in. In fact, 7 am is now what I consider “sleeping late.” If I do try to set an alarm and get up before the kids, one of them will inevitably wake up right before it goes off, or two minutes afterward. It’s not my season.
So why is it that, almost every Sunday, I lay out my workout clothes and set my alarm, pretending that I’m going to get up early the next day? I require (but rarely get) eight hours of sleep to feel like a functioning human, but I tell myself that Monday will be different. My kids won’t wake up in the middle of the night; they will sleep in until I wake them, and I will get my early morning routine. This rarely happens. Why do I bother setting an alarm? It’s not my season.
My mom was one of these moms. I don’t remember her not being ready before we were awake, except maybe on the weekends. She’d get up at 5 am, exercise, take a shower and do her makeup all before we crawled out of bed. She tells me that my sisters and I slept in later than my kids do, but even so, I’ve always thought that I would be that kind of mom too.
In my head, the moms who get up earlier than their kids are more put together than I am. I tell myself that because they stand at the bus stop with curled hair and coffee in hand, the rest of their life must look perfect too. Logically, I know this can’t be true, but still, I aspire to be the mom who gets up early.
Maybe someday, when all of my kids stay in their own beds at night and sleep past 6 am, I will be the mom who gets up before her kids. Right now, it’s not my season, and I’m no less of a mom because of it.