Monday, August 11, 2008

Sleeping Arrangements II

The week after vacation was difficult. I stayed up way too late catching up on what I would otherwise have done the week we were gone. The boys had some trouble adjusting back to our normal routine, and my lack of sleep left me impatient and easily irritated with them. Now that I am feeling more rested, I thought that those of you who have been following my blog - if you even exist - might enjoy an update on the sleeping arrangements here.

Not much has changed with Donny; he rarely, if ever, sleeps on his bed. He prefers to nap and fall asleep for the night on the body pillow that we placed next to his mattress (thinking that it would cushion his fall if he rolled out of bed, not that it would BE the mattress). When he wakes up in the middle of the night, he moves to some blankets on the floor next to our bed, and by morning he is snuggled up next to Don. Since Donny is not using his twin size mattress, I usually put Hayden down there, leaving the crib mattress-turned-toddler bed untouched. When Donny gets up in the night, he leaves his bedroom door open, which allows Hayden the freedom to stagger into our room in the wee hours of the morning. I often find him curled up at the foot of our bed like a tired puppy. I stopped turning the baby monitor on now that there are no babies left to monitor, just big boys who can come find Mumma and Daddy themselves.

One night, just as I had gotten into bed myself, I heard a small, half-asleep voice calling "Mum-ma! Mum-ma!" as it wandered over to the side of my bed in search of me. My little Linus was dragging a blue blanket along behind him, calling it "sheet" - a term he learned because Donny sleeps with only a sheet over himself and then drags it throughout our home when he wakes up. Hayden was quite pleased when I reluctantly gave him permission to climb up into our bed, though he somehow managed to drop his "sheet" and spent a few bewildered moments wondering what had happened to it. When I retrieved it off the floor for him, he happily tucked it up to his chin and snuggled down next to me. As much as I would have liked to have my pillow to myself, it was hard to resist that pathetically adorable performance.

Last night was another example of Hayden's late-night charm. He was still awake at 10:00pm, which is nothing incredibly unusual; since birth he has been my night owl, often staying awake for several hours after his older brother goes to sleep. After my failed attempts, Don finally put him to bed, but it wasn't long before he came toddling out of his room. He found me typing on my laptop and munching popcorn as he climbed into my lap. As if being awake at this late hour and ignoring all commands to go to sleep were not crimes enough, he then reached across me and stuck his hand into my popcorn bowl. "I don't think so!" I said, unwilling to share my late evening munchies with the stubbornly awake child, especially since popcorn is a choking hazard for toddlers. But instead of sneaking a handful of the forbidden snack for himself, he picked up a single kernel in his chubby little hand and held it up to my mouth. After I ate it, he took another piece and then another, feeding them to me with a huge smile on his own face. He even made sure to rub each kernel in the salt at the bottom of the bowl, just like I do. When he had helped me finish the last of my bedtime snack, he declared, "All gone!" And eventually, thanks to help from Daddy and sheer exhaustion, he fell asleep in his own room.

Not long thereafter, Don and I decided to head to bed too, and maybe have the room to ourselves for a little while. As you can imagine, things did not quite work out that way. I heard a strange hissing noise and looked up just in time to see the tail of Donny's sheet sweeping past as he made a beeline for our bedroom floor. Don and I laughed about it a bit and soon proceeded to get ready for bed ourselves. Donny hadn't stirred since he relocated, so I assumed he was asleep. While I laid down under the covers, Don finished brushing his teeth and turned off the bathroom light, quietly heading towards his side of the bed.

Then, out of the darkness, an unexpected little voice chimed, "Time to slee-eep!" So much for that alone time.

But in spite of the interruption, we actually did get a few minutes of child-free interaction. My sweet husband rose to the occasion and gave a half-asleep Donny his first lesson on the importance of Mumma-Daddy alone time, for which I was thankful. At the end of a long day, it's nice to reconnect and remember what I love about the father of these little blessings. And it's nice to know that at the end of the day, I may be tired, but I am never lonely; I have three precious men to snuggle and love.

In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat—for he grants sleep to those he loves.
Psalm 127:2

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