I have always enjoyed sleeping, but I’ve never been a good sleeper. I’m a night owl and that doesn’t lend itself well to getting a good night’s sleep. Throw in a child who is also a night owl, and sleep before midnight was a rare occurrence.

I loved the mornings, though. Maddie, Rigby, and I would sleep late every weekday. Mike would kiss us goodbye, and Maddie would wake enough to smile at him and then roll into my arms. I loved wrapping myself around her warm little body. We’d lay curled up together for hours, inhaling and exhaling each other, dreaming and content. She’d let me know it was time to get out of bed with a big stretch before she’d sit up in bed and say “HI!” with a bright sunny smile on her face. I’d always try to convince her to stay in bed with me for a few more minutes for a few more moments of bliss.

Now I sleep even worse than I used to. My arms are empty and her spot in our bed is filled with her favorite toys and blankets. Falling asleep is so hard, but waking isn’t any better.

In the mornings now, I lay in bed for hours before I give up on sleep. But before I get out of bed, I roll onto my back. I rub my belly, and I wait to feel my second daughter stir awake. I feel her stretch inside, and I can picture her throwing her arms and legs out just like her sister. I imagine her sitting up in bed and saying, “Hi!” with a bright sunny smile on her face. I try to think about the snuggles we’ll have every morning once she’s here.

And then I try to get out of bed.