Now that the twins are more than two months old, we are slowly getting into our new normal. But, three months ago I was losing sleep every night as I wondered how we would make it through these perilous first 12 weeks. I am convinced that the hardest part of having a new baby is lack of sleep, and with older kids in the house the sleep situation is worse. With a first baby, it is possible to sleep in past 6 am; with other kids, mom gets up when they get up. How would I survive on no sleep with six kids who need my love and attention?!
And, making matters worse: it is impossible sleep while in a hospital – machines are buzzing, nurses are constantly “checking in”, the bed is uncomfortable. It seems so unfair to send a new mother home with such a tremendous sleep deficit!
Then, when I was 32 weeks pregnant, it hit me. A 3 am stroke of brilliance:
Instead of coming right home from the hospital, I would go to a hotel. Not only would this give me quiet bonding time with the babies, but it would help me build up a sleep critical supply. I mentioned my idea to Chris and he agreed. While the brunt of housework and kidwork would fall on his shoulders while I was away, he also wouldn’t be woken by two crying newborns in the middle of the night. It was a win for both of us!
The day after we were discharged from the hospital, I booked a very nice neighborhood hotel for a cheap rate on Hotwire.com. The room was quiet. The bed was so comfortable. The daily housekeeping freed me from the drudgery of making the bed and washing the towels. The view was fantastic.
I had time to be a new mother. And it was glorious!
The best part? Our hotel was close to home so the big kids could visit. Evie was thrilled to take home the little shampoo bottles, Mack liked checking out the great view, Vivian and Ben snuggled the babies in the big hotel bed. When I started to tire, I gave Chris the signal and he took the mangy brood home. Ahhhhhh.
When my hotel stay came to an end after three nights, I packed the babies into the stroller and walked the eight blocks home. As the August afternoon sun shone on my weary but rested face, I realized that I could do this. I can do this!
I don’t think any mother is ever really prepared to come home to six children, but the hotel stay give me a jump start on surviving the chaos. Money well spent!
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