You Can’t Get Back Lost Sleep




Yesterday was a particularly long day. It started at 3 am where my little girl woke up and simply could not fall back to sleep. I’d only gone to sleep just after 11 pm myself. She’d already woken up briefly at 1am, so my 4 hours sleep had already been broken.

So it was a long day.

My head and eyes hurt so much I couldn’t think. We had ice cream for breakfast, followed by jelly for lunch – because food that required anything more than scooping and serving was just too difficult to think about, let alone make. I’m sure the sugar overload didn’t help my headache. 

Thank goodness for big dark glasses for the school run to cover my big dark eye circles. I’m sorry to the school mum who tried to talk to me and I couldn’t manage more than one-word responses.

At 6pm I was so tired I sat in the bathroom after I’d brushed my teeth and cried. I just couldn’t cope any more. It was too hard, too long, too much – too everything.

My partner asked me if I was hungry, would I like some dinner – and I didn’t even know. Maybe. Maybe not. I had a glass of water and a panadol and went to bed.

And then I couldn’t even sleep. It took 2 hours to convince myself it was okay to relax after spending all day forcing myself to focus and stay awake.

In the end I slept from about 8:30pm to 7:30am – with a little bit of restlessness in the middle of the night. Which is a really good sleep by my standards.

So why am I so tired today? Why is my brain still so fuzzy and I’m emotionally on edge? Why is it all still so hard today?


The kids are at school and kindy, I’ve had a good sleep and two cups of coffee – I should be able to handle this. But I can’t even face it. I just want to curl up with some ice cream and watch TV.

The dishes, laundry, general cleaning from the last two days needs to done. When I didn’t do anything yesterday those things didn’t just go away – it just doubled what I need to do today. And if I don’t do it today tomorrow will be tripled – and so on.

So, despite a good sleep last night I’m still not caught up. Not even close.

Meanwhile I can’t relax while the house is a mess, but I don’t have the energy to clean it. So I’ll just sit uncomfortably doing nothing. 

I also still haven’t eaten since the jelly I had for lunch yesterday.

And that’s why it takes so long to recover from a bad night’s sleep – because I don’t have the energy to take care of myself.

Hopefully tomorrow I’ll be a bit closer to recovered.

Rachel Stewart

Rachel is the founder of Parenting Central. She is raising two children, boy and girl, with her partner. Rachel is obsessed prams, car seats, carriers and all things baby. She has worked in the baby industry for several years, for both suppliers and also in a retail setting and has developed a passion for connecting parents with the right products to make their lives easier. When Rachel isn't playing with prams she's enjoys crocheting, drinking coffee (sometimes wine) and spending a little too much time on Facebook.


  1. Oh man, I’ve been there. I still don’t feel like I’ve recovered from my week in hospital (sleeping in an armchair) and that was a month ago. I just feel permanently jittery and blurry and in need of a fortnight’s uninterrupted sleep. That’s not too much to ask, is it? Take care, my dear. x

  2. Oh man, this is far more familiar that I care to admit!

  3. Hopefully you’re feeling a bit better now – sleep deprivation is terrible. I’ve been assured it doesn’t last though – we will get through!! Sending sleepy dust your way

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