There’s always a smug lucky few who escape the tiredness curse, but if you’re not one of them, then you’ll relate to Rachel Tompkins’ round-up of the six signs that you’re sleep-deprived…

Whoever first uttered the words ‘sleeping like a baby’ clearly didn’t have one. For many new mums sleep deprivation is the hardest part about having a newborn…and an infant…and a toddler (sorry to break the bad news!). But if you’ve done any of the below, know you’re not alone…

1. Oven oversights

Us new mums are good at carrying on as normal after the baby arrives, just getting on with things like we didn’t just bring an actual human being into the world. And that’s exactly what I was doing when I invited a friend and her son over for dinner when my youngest was a few weeks old. Only dinner was a long time coming, because I put the lasagne into the oven but forgot to turn it on. Thankfully my mate saw the funny side, and even I managed to laugh and not cry…

2. Ranting notes

Unlike some internet virals which stem from urban myths, I can hold my hands up and say mums really do write aggressive/desperate notes and pin them to the front door when they’re short of sleep. Most are a warning to anyone who might so much as come near the doorbell when their baby is sleeping that they’re risking instant death (or worse still, the scorn of a sleep-deprived mother). So beware all you delivery drivers/posties/friends; knock or ring at your peril!

3. Forgetting everything

Not just the date, the year, the day of the week, there are times when you’re so sleep-deprived that you forget a conversation you’re having before you’ve even got to the end of it. Can make for a very confusing coffee morning to say the least…

4. Counting the hours

Another sure-fire sign you’re sleep deprived is when you obsessively count the hours of sleep (not sheep) you’ve had and can’t stop yourself from working out how many more you’re likely to get by morning. I spent many a night-feeds doing the maths in my head that’s for sure.

5. Mainlining chocolate

Only a truly sleep-deprived mother will understand that if you can’t have wine, there really is nothing that can get you through the day as well as a good old bar of Dairy Milk. Besides, breastfeeding burns up to 500 calories a day, which must equate to at least five bars right?

6. Struggling to sleep

Sounds ridiculous but it’s true. You spend all day feeling like your eyelids are about to close mid-conversation, then when it comes to bedtime you can’t get to sleep no matter how hard you try. Which results in you laying there counting how many hours sleep you haven’t had. Needless to say there’s only one thing for it – anyone for that Dairy Milk?!

@RachTompkins @mushmums