That line from Ryan Adams goes through my mind these days fairly often at about 8:00pm. At that point I begin to feel tired and ready for bed, and I have absolutely no gurantee that I will be able to get an hour straight of sleep. I do have a pretty good guarantee I will not sleep through the night.
I think we have all stayed up obscenely late and paid the price the next day. Many of us have also woken up obscenely early and paid a similar price. Usually it is because we know that the late night chat or event is worth the tired next-day or that the morning hike or sunrise or meeting can often be made up by an early next-night bedtime or a nap.
But there is little comparison to months-on-end of repeatedly interrupted sleep. It really is quite something.
Seriously, how many times in life do we get to enjoy being repeatedly woken in the middle of the night so we can be awake for periods ranging from 2 minutes to 2 hours at a time? Now there is an experience!
Last night I was up from 2am to 4am. I read for a bit and held a baby and walked around for awhile, trying desperately not to drop said baby in a sleep-walking stupor.
This is life. This is not heroism. This is barely even survival. This is what (almost) every parent has done for their child. It is crazy, really. But it is the self-sacrifice naturally invested into humanity. You either rise (literally) to the challenge or you don't. I've only been at it for a few days and sometimes I honestly don't know how people do it.
One night at a time I guess. Take help in every form it is available. Try to enjoy it. Truth is, there is much to enjoy. A baby sleeping is pure delight. A baby laughing in his sleep is sheer joy! A content child in the arms is a pleasure. But Chicken Soup for the Soul already told you that.
What we need to also remember with a sense of humour in the darkest hours is that even a squirming writhing tiny body of chaos is a wonder to behold.
Just some fragmentary thoughts from a frazzled but basically intact father.