It's 3 a.m. Your baby is screaming, and you can't make it stop. They are fed, they are dry, they are swaddled and they are rocked. Nothing is working. It becomes frustrating. If you say you've never been frustrated at this moment, you're lying. I know I get frustrated as a mom in these situations more often than I'd like to admit. But I know my baby is just tired and doesn't know any better, it's her only way of communication right now. So I continue to rock her, sometimes until I'm crying, begging for sleep, and she eventually closes those eyes and gives in to the inevitable sleep she is fighting so hard.
Last night this happened. Last night, one of the very few nights my other half was home. We are spending it awake, at 3 a.m., frustrated, with a screaming baby. I would never blame her for this. I blame myself, for allowing myself to even get frustrated. So I rock my baby and I cry because this is the second night in a row she's woken up every hour, after sleeping through the night most of her life so far. Karma for bragging about it I suppose.
So I continue trying everything I know until finally she gives in and is suddenly so peaceful and quiet. And then I pray. I pray that she stays asleep until morning, because Mommy is just exhausted. And then God speaks to me. What if she didn't wake up at 3 a.m. and cry at night? What if she weren't here at all? And then my eyes really open y'all. Some people pray every day and every night of their lives to have this exact moment.
Some people pray to just hear their babies scream. Doesn't that sound a little crazy? It isn't. Somewhere out there at this exact moment, there is a soldier awake wondering when he's going to hear his baby cry for the first time. And on the other half of the world, his wife is also wondering when she will get help with this screaming baby. And then there's parents who never got the chance to meet their baby, and are probably awake at this exact moment, crying themselves. And then there's the parents who have been trying to conceive for days, weeks, months, years; who are probably awake at this exact moment crying and begging and praying for a positive pregnancy test. And then there are the parents who did get to meet their baby for a split second, and that was it, just a second. Those are the ones that hit me hard. Those parents, they are laying awake, enduring pain I can't even imagine, begging and praying to just hear their baby cry at 3 a.m.
Life is all about perspective, and God is so good at reminding me of that. So I crawled in bed and I cried because how selfish am I? There are so many people in this world begging for this exact moment and I am begging for it to be non existent. Never again. I can't promise I won't ever get frustrated again - that's normal. But never will I ever take for granted my beautiful, healthy, baby girl crying at 3 a.m. again.
So I cried as the love of my life pulled me closer and just held me and kissed my forehead, because he knew exactly what I meant when I said "Some people pray for this exact moment." And I can't help but even cry right now when writing this because wow. God is so good to me, and I am so grateful to be in my home with my hardworking fiancé and my healthy, beautiful sleeping baby.
If you're a mom who gets frustrated at 3 a.m. (or any time of day) and you find yourself asking "Why does this happen to me?" Instead, say : "Thank God for 3 a.m. wake ups." When your baby is awake, screaming at 3 a.m., it means they are breathing. It means they are communicating with you to the best of their ability. It means that they need their mommy or daddy. How special is that? How amazing is that?
I am so grateful to be awake at 3 a.m.