February 9, 2017

Dr Harvey Karp, pediatrician and child development expert says that half of all new parents get fewer than six hours of broken sleep a night – a level of sleep deprivation that causes the same mental impairment as being drunk. If that’s the case, I have been tipsy for a lot longer than I’d like to admit! Especially after having my second child four months ago.

My two-year-old son took 10 long months to sleep through the night and when he finally did, boy did sobriety feel good! Now I am back into the world of the new baby – midnight feeds, wonder weeks, growth spurts and teething is just around the corner.

If half of us new parents are walking around like drunken sailors, I wonder how it impacts our day-to-day lives?

Perhaps it’s time the RTA brought in ‘new parent’ plates, mandatory ‘baby on board’ signage when we hop into our SUVs, the Wiggles blaring, kids wailing, drinks and crackers being passed to the back seats – and dear reader, please do not do what I did and give your toddler a squeezie pouch of yoghurt to eat in the car… your car will never be the same after it is splattered with yoghurt all over the roof and car seats!

Other drivers should be well aware that we might be on the roads at a very early hour of the morning but we might not have all our wits about us.

Also heightening the feeling of drunkenness is the constant swaying and rocking required to settle the baby. As if we didn’t need to feel even more woozy.

The good Dr Harvey is currently spruiking his new invention, the SNOO cradle. This $1,600 baby bed automatically responds to your baby’s fussing by choosing the right mix of white noise and rocking most likely to soothe them back to sleep. He’s put together all the scientific elements that babies need to help them and their tired parents rest for longer. It sounds amazing. But to be honest, I consider myself a happy drunk. And nothing quite beats those late night cuddles while rocking your tiny baby to sleep. And every night brings me closer to the end of the big night out that is new parenthood.

Words by Kate Meikle, Mummy Files.

Live outside the box at Watagan Park

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