I would like to sit down and calculate how many waking hours I’ve spent trying to get my children to go to sleep. No, I wouldn’t. It would probably make me cry. I accept that this is part of the Mama job description, just as part of being a kid is that you don’t go down without a fight, whether you need to cry and whine that you are NOT tired or get out of bed eleventy times or simply work on your headstands in bed and then fall crashing out of the bed with the approximate velocity and force of a herd of thundering wildebeasts and then wonder why the following reception is not more solicitous. I get it.
What I don’t get is how the very same creature who fought sleep tooth and nail can succumb to it so completely that they will continue to be asleep even once they are technically awake. (No, I didn’t typo.) In my world, if you are upright and your eyes are open, that’s called being awake, dammit.
I came upstairs tonight expecting to spend 60 seconds doing my “rounds” and then come climb into my own bed. Silly me. First I went into the Chickadee’s room, turned off her music, and started to switch off her nightlight. She was snoring, so I knew she was asleep. Silly me (again). As my hand neared the nightlight, she started screaming at me. Eyes open, half sitting up, and speaking an ancient tongue with which I’m not familiar. But since her head didn’t rotate and the bed stayed on the floor I’m thinking it might be okay. The conversation went kind of like this:
Her: VASNEF ERTY BAK FULAR SEN!
Me: Shhhh, it’s just me, go back to sleep.
Her: GERFLU! HASNEK BABA!
Me: Honey, shhhhh, it’s alright. Sleep, baby.
Her: WAAAAAAAAABKET NOOOOOOOOOO!!!
Me: Oh for crying out loud… same to you.
(I left the room and she stopped.)
Next it was on to the Monkey. In the continued yet hopeless campaign to get him nighttime potty trained, I drag his little tushie out of bed every night before I turn in, and take him to the bathroom. Tonight was our usual; I carried him to the bathroom, set him down where he swayed back and forth with one eye open while I pulled down his jammies and pull-up, and sat him on the toilet. Usually he goes right away and we get him put back together and into bed in a jiffy.
Sometimes he’s too sleepy, and forgets to aim. After several incidents which I will refrain from detailing here, we put an end to vertical urination right quick. All sitting, all the time, buster. But aim is still required because, well, inconveniently enough, the toilet is underneath, not straight out in front.
Which brings us to tonight’s joy. It went like this:
Me: Honey, point down.
Me: HONEY. Point down, please.
Me: HELLOOOOOOOO. Can you hear me?
Me: Good. Please point down, you’re going to pee on me.
Him: *starts to cry*
Me: What’s the matter? Why are you crying?
Him: *no answer, more snuffling*
Me: Why are you crying? Stop it, you’re fine. Just point down and peepee please.
Him: *starts to list to the left, hands still–maddeningly!–limp at his sides*
Me: Do you want to go back to bed?
Him: Yes. Bed.
Me: Great, just point down and pee and we’ll get you right back into bed.
Him: *back to crying*
I am embarassed to admit… this went on for a good five minutes. I raised my voice… I actually clapped in the child’s face (I know, I know, but I was running out of ideas)… and when I was just about ready to forget it and take him back to bed, he peed.
All over me. And the floor. And his pajamas.
And then he cried.
And I didn’t kill him.
Which I think makes me eligible for sainthood, wouldn’t you agree? Only I would like a shower before the ceremony, please.