Friday, July 22, 2011

GBE2 Challenge: Midnight

Our older son is a fan of the midnight hour.

I enjoy my sleep.

To him, social norms that are attached to time are often vague concepts to grasp. When we come face to face in the dark of night, he will look at me as if to say, "Well, what do you mean that it is TIME to sleep? I am awake. I sleep when I am asleep....DUH."

I look at him desperately. He looks at me like I'm an idiot. We're getting nowhere.

At midnight, I grow my stronger, inch by inch by inch.

He babbles. He tosses and he turns.

I hope and I pray and hold my breath.

He turns on toys and his videos and starts to giggle.

I lose hope and wait for it all to begin.

He leaps out of bed, his footsteps pounding on the floor.

I jump out of bed, ready to block his door.

"It's time for bed," I say as soon as he opens his door.

He stares at me blankly.

"Go to bed." I demand firmly.

Dutifully, he goes to bed. But he gets right back out. His mom said nothing about getting in bed and STAYING there. We must go through this cycle twenty times. In between his trip from bed to door, he plays with his vacuum, tops and toys. Giggles will turn into maniac laughter as his one-man party turns into a downright rave.

But, then, wait for it. Waaaiiit for iiiit.....

"Car!" he says.

And, there it is. What is a midnight party with out a car trip?

The last midnight car trip I took with him, I wore my pajamas and robe. All I kept thinking is that I sure would be a sight if I got pulled over by the police for some traffic violation or, Heaven forbid, if we got into an accident.

Fortunately for me, I don't do most of the midnight car rides. My husband does those. I strictly do house detail. So, they go for their ride, and I shut my eyes, waiting for their return and my next shift.

Despite the fatigue, I think a lot in the midnight hour. Sometimes I will sit on guard outside of our son's room, making sure he is safe, but also letting my mind drift away with my thoughts.

I remember bringing him home from the hospital. My mom was placed on night duty with him so we, the young new parents could get some rest. However, there was no rest to be had as we approached the midnight hour, and our son cried out in his distressed infant's cry. That cry was never normal from the start. And, from the very start, we were introduced to his insane sleep pattern. My mom put a lot of late night hours in with that child--we all have. I thought that he would outgrow it, and, yet, here we are a decade later, and we still are living the same crazy life.

My husband looks tired. I have lost brain cells. But I think our son is doing just dandy, thank you very much.

"It's time to sleep," I say to him, tucking him tightly upon his return from the car trip. Maybe this tuck-in will have the magic touch. Or, maybe this kiss will do it. Or maybe my saying "I love you" will give him just the right amount of security to fall into slumber. I do it all and walk out of the room.

I walk around the corner to my own bed and happily rest my head on my own pillow. SIGH. It is time to sleep.

"Mamamommy!" I hear him say. "I want walk, please."

My calling card. Looks as if it is time to start the cycle again. Tonight, we will have an After Midnight party as well.


  1. Have you heard of the newest bestselling picture book? It's called "Go the F*ck to Sleep."


  2. LOL! I have. So many people have sent me the link! I believe it was written for me!

  3. my mom and dad used to take me for car rides to help me go to sleep: now they have those vibrating chairs for that!

  4. And yet you were up and posting this at 6:13 AM? You're a heroine!

  5. I think the times are off on this blog, but, yes, I was up. Children beat poor sleep habits into you.

    Kate, our older son had a vibrating infant seat. He actually slept in it when he was an infant. We tried using a vibrating chair insert a couple weeks ago, but at this point, he's craving the whole experience of the car ride--lights, sounds, scenery AND the vibration. Lucky us. :)

  6. I sure hope you get time during the day for a power nap, Amy! You're a wonderful mom!

  7. Hoping to be able to do that in the Fall when both kids go to school. I've been homeschooling our younger son, and he is home for the summer while our older son has extended school year services. That's why I haven't been on the GBE2 site too much. Holding out for the Fall...

  8. c a f f e i n e !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! lol writing is therapy isn't it? love always!!

  9. You are just a amazing mommy. I promise you, I would never be able to do what you do daily. God knows who will be the right parents for his special blessings.

  10. I was just about to say what Jo already did, so ditto that. You are extraordinary.

  11. Bless you, Amy. Dunno how you keep so cheerful. If I don't get a certain amount of sleep I start killing people! I love your blog. It inspires me to realise I don't have it half as bad as I think and that joy can be found no matter how difficult the situation. You're incredible *hugs*