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By Jessica T

Stay-in-bed mom

Uploaded: Oct 27, 2013

Sleep deprivation with newborns is a strange thing. At breakfast, I try to calculate how much sleep we may have cobbled together on a given night. And lately I find that neither my husband nor I can remember how many times the twins woke and when they fell back asleep.

When my first daughter was born, my husband wrote a story about how our tiny baby would climb down from her crib and travel to our bed on the cat's back because neither of us could recollect bringing her in each morning.

This time around, the babies simply cannot linger in our bed. However around five AM, things get very surreal... Babies are handed to me, I turn on my side, lift my shirt, and nurse. Baby and I often drift off in the process, and I forget who's nursing and on what side they last nursed. I woke up last week in the dark, panicked to feel a baby in the crook of my arm, having forgotten to put someone back to bed, but reassured by her soft, persistent breath.

At about seven AM, big sister gets up and gets involved. She comforts babies, changes diapers, and hands them my way with stranger and stranger nicknames.

"Mommy, 'Little Stuff' wants to nurse."

"Here's 'Muffkin' - she's half munchkin and half muffin!"

"Bugaboo wants to say hello!"

"Make way for Mr. Cozy!"

The list goes on. We developed strange, adorable nicknames with my first daughter too, and I wonder if they were created in a similarly sleepy haze. Perhaps it's the mark of the good-humored, not-very-well-thought-through adoration that comes from being a sleepless family.

The truth is, I stay in bed and cling to an extra hour's sleep while my daughter gets ready for school and my husband shuttles her to school. Only as he's leaving the house with her at 8, do I get an armful of twins, a cappuccino, and at last drag myself out of bed.

What are the strange side effects you and your family have experienced due to the sleeplessness that comes with newborns? What are the origins for your kids' pet names?