Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Sleep like a baby

Oh, Sleep -- you crazy, feels like heaven, sweet oblivion, daily necessity, uncontrollable state, you. Sleep, I will love you always, but we're on a 'break' right now, trying to sort out our differences. I want more of a commitment from you, but you have concerns about my fidelity, my unpredictable fits of leaving you for the computer, the bathroom, Munchkin, or a guilty interlude with my own conscious mind. I know you're probably going to break my heart, or make me crazy, Sleep--I've seen what you've done to The New Girl and Bubandpie--but you feel so good, I can't give you up. I stray, but I always come back, even if you don't want to take me.

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I want to sleep like a baby.

Last week, crushed under a pile of grading I couldn't seem to find the time to get out from under, I finagled a free pass from Munchkin's bedtime and headed out to Starbucks, exams in tow. As I tied my shoes and hefted the big backpack on my shoulders, I asked Pynchon if, in addition to bathing, dressing, combing, bottling, and bedding our little girl, he could possibly remember to pull her laundry basket out of her room for me?

He forgot.

He only remembered as he creeped softly down our old and creaky stairs from her room, empty bottle in hand, toddler tucked in and kissed. He pondered his options as he stepped over and around the squeaky boards we taught ourselves to avoid by reflex. Laundry? Sleeping baby! Promise to wife? Sleeping baby! Sleeping baby! The situation was dire, though: it was possible Munchkin might have to go to daycare in pyjamas if laundry was neglected for yet another day.

With manly resolve, and tossing oaths to the wind, he marched back upstairs, fully prepared to wake Munchkin up and start the bedtime routine all over. He opened her (squeaky) bedroom door. He strode across her (squeaky) bedroom floor. He fumbled open the (not quite square) wardrobe door. He pulled out the laundry basket, and, not realizing that an empty one was nested under the full one, heard one clatter to the floor. He picked it up and put it back in the wardrobe. The door got away from him and banged shut. On the way out of Munchkin's room, he bumped the full basket on the change table.

All to the accompaniment of stone silence.

Munchkin had been put down awake, and in the time it took Pynchon to get to the bottom of the stairs, make a decision, and climb back up again, she feel so soundly asleep that his Keystone Cops laundry basket retrieval exercise failed to elicit from her so much as a soft sigh.

How far we've come! We spent months trying not to breathe when she (please dear god please) fell asleep. For awhile, we made sure we were both upstairs when she went to bed, because we didn't want to risk walking past her door. We shot angry glares at each other for such transgressions as sneezing-during-the-baby's-nap. Now, we are coming to grips with the new information that we can make a ruckus not three feet away from her and she will either sleep through it or ignore us roundly.

I want to sleep like a baby. And start conversing above a whisper after 7pm.

40 comments:

bubandpie said...

I used to be so terrified of waking Bub up after he'd fallen asleep. Then he started over-sleeping when he napped: if I didn't get him up before, say, 4:45, we'd be in trouble. So at 4:30 I'd go in the room, turn on the light, start banging around, tickling his forehead ... Nothing. Nada. No reaction. I've been a lot more relaxed since then.

I've got a total of 55 unmarked essays right now, 40 of which have to be returned by Monday. Oh - and it's Bub's birthday this weekend. Yay me.

cinnamon gurl said...

I have to say I do NOT want to sleep like my baby, although that's what seems to keep happening. The boy can wake like 10 times a night some nights. Still. At 21 months. Ugh.

Beck said...

Our babies napped in their slings, and so they now all have a magical ability to sleep through pretty much anything, since they spent so much of their infancy napping in the very loud hub of the house.
The Baby has just this week moved to her toddler bed and so tucking her in now feels perilous: will she decide to get up and roam around the kids' room? So far, not yet.

Bon777 said...

Sleep like a baby...not always a good thing...sleep in general, a very good thing! I thought the baby was sleeping through the night but it turned out that his big sister, who is sharing a room with him, has been playing nurse maid and giving him his soother in the middle of the night so she can get some sleep. Good sleeping for mommy not so good sleeping for the girl. We are thinking of moving her to the office to sleep, at least until the baby is really sleeping through the night.

Kyla said...

What a great stage to hit1 I hope you and Sleep can rekindle your love affair soon. ;)

Mimi said...

Yeahhhhh, but you know? As soon as I clicked 'Post', she woke up? Hollering? At 4:45 am? And then again at 5:30? And once more at ten to six? I guess I wouldn't have been sleeping last night in any case ...

crazymumma said...

I know. With #1 we tippytod around and now she wakes to the slightest sound. We were a family and noise was made. She is far better off than any of us! She can sleep through so much more noise!

Oh, The Joys said...

Bravo!! Good news!

Denguy said...

I love the Keystone Cops.

My kids can sleep through anything. Our first actually fell asleep at my cousin's karaoke party. Our second has fallen asleep while I watched a very loud movie.

I'm not bragging, it's just how it is.

Christine said...

dude, i know every squeaky door and floor board and stair in my house!

kittenpie said...

That's fantastic. I sometimes worry about our squeaky floor, but so far so good, as long as she is already asleep.

Jenifer said...

Thankfully both girls sleep pretty soundly. For most trips I pack their suitcases while they are sleeping in their rooms. The lamp light is plenty and I get it done in peace. I also put their laundry away after they are in bed. I guess I should count myself lucky!

I hope you and sleep are good terms again soon.

Lisa b said...

I have been there too. Isn't it wonderful not to tiptoe and whisper anymore?
I love sleep.

Lisa said...

Congrats on the sleeping baby! YEAY.

NotSoSage said...

Don't you just love old houses? This was us, exactly...cursing the large squeaky spot in her room. I think I still hop over one spot in the hallway even though it's no longer necessary. And probably will for the REST OF MY LIFE.

Yay for sleeping babies...now we have to figure something out for mom.

nomotherearth said...

We used to do the exact same thing till we discovered it wasn't necessary. I still do it sometimes out of habit. Luckily for us, the Little Guy shows the makings of being able to sleep through anything. Probably because the Boy is far from quiet around him..

Unbalanced Reaction said...

Sleep and I aren't really speaking anymore. I maintain that it's not my fault-- our neighbors are coming between us with their 3 am bass jam sessions!

Squarehead said...

When our youngest was a baby I was prepared to take the midnight feedings. I was ready to step in and handle the overnight wake ups. I was going to be the dad who took care of those things so mom could get her rest.....She woke up once. She slept all night every night....
I asked the doctor if I should wake her up for her overnight feeding. He looked at me, he said the following.

"Are you F#$%i* crazy?"

Thanks for a good read. It brings back a lot of good memories.

A Family/Group Member said...

Oh you have such a great blog. So realistic and honest. I remember the days/nights well.

The People History said...

Reading this took me back 20 years ago , my wife needed some sleep and we found the perfect way , I would take the little S?? out for a car drive at 2 AM in the morning he would be asleep within minutes , then came the hard part getting him back indoors and still asleep , sometimes I would just give up and fall asleep in the drivers seat and leaving him asleep in the car as well

Jeannie said...

wd40 for squeaky doors...how about moving her laundry basket to another room? my boy is 18 months and he sleeps well, although he doesn't nap well. lately, he's been sleeping lighter at night.

Jax said...

Mine is now 4and a half. She pretty much sleeps all night. I still don't. She took so long to do it that I still wake up when she used to.....Sleep, old friend, come back to me! I miss you.....

Annonymous said...

I'm a college student expecting my first. At 21 i've pulled a few all nighters writing papers and studying. I feel like the biggest challenge now, and for the rest of my life, will be to try an reunite with my slumber. I am due on christmas and have never been more anxious for winter break in my life! I can only hope we walk light enough so we can all get some rest!

Stay At Home Daddy O said...

That's parenthood! I have a 9 month old and a 2 year old. Try getting them to sleep at the same time. Now, that's work.

bluegreenplant said...

Speaking of the future of the younger generations, have you heard about the huge mulch spill on Interstate 80? Our website has coverage.

Sheina Fae said...

The title of this blog caught my eye... Jane Siberry references are very rare these days...

R2K said...

: )

the new girl said...

Hope!
I love hope!

I'm still wishing, daily, that I could just levitate over the squeaky floors. I'd never noticed how freaking noisy this house is.

Critias said...

My wife and I have a 3.5 year old. A little charmer whose idea of sleep is: let's play chase! Last night he nodded of at 11pm after hitting the hay at 8. Well, he was waiting for his mother to return from a meeting, I suspect, he was too hot, he was 'scared of the noises' he need to 'talk his day' as he likes to do (that is, go through the day's events), off to the toilet twice (one must have been faking). Phew. But at least when he's asleep, its like he's a stone.
My dad told me that its good to keep normal household noise going then the little one will be used to it and be more flexible in being able to sleep: I've found that pretty right . . .but I still wish he'd get to sleep before 11pm.

angeljoy said...

Great post. Congratulations on the front page!

M. James Schroeder said...

I have just recently started blogging about the death of my mom. I, too, have kids and they pull me back. I had just finished a post when I found my way to your words and am reminded of things sometimes obliterated by the intensity of death. I am thankful. Ministry and Smiths...me, too. Saw Morrissey a few weeks back--he's still throwing off his shirt (s). Be well. I'm at angstromandparsec.com telling my tale.

suchsimplepleasures said...

i still long for sleep and my baby is almost 4. i love that post! it is so much like what happens in households that have babies...everywhere!
take care!

Greg said...

I just got married and we had made a conscious decision to NOT have children.. we figured 8 billion or however many there are of us now was quite enough...

After reading your insanely wellwritten treatise into new parenthood I feel we made the right decision..

Here's hoping you get some shuteye..

(Oh, "everyday" is spelled wrong on your "mission statement".. since you're a "blog of note" now I figured you'd want that fixed...)

Greg
www.denvertvguy.com

Ctelblog said...

Squeaky floors ay! I still walk in a curious pattern round the bedroom to avoid them, it is now so ingrained. Sleep deprivation is a total killer.

encantadora said...

Sleep, sleep. Yes! That is my relationship with him/her to. Dirty little thing that taunts and teases and questions my need.

Tracy Berta-daughter to the King, wife, mother, speaker, writer said...

Mimi,
This was the first time I stopped by your blog. I soooooo enjoyed reading this! I am a mother of 5, the youngest being 8 months. sleep?.......hmmmm someday...

Blessings,
Tracy

Bonds756 said...

Nice writing!! Just learn how to sleep with your eyes open!

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Amanda said...

Moaning.
3 year old, 18 months old and 4.5 months pregnant. I yearn for sleep, even if it is the sleep of others so that I might at least lie awake in silence.
Congrats on your uneventful bumps in the night.

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