“Am I sleeping? Have I slept at all?”This was how yesterday began.
― Chuck Palahniuk, Fight Club
After a few moments it sinks in that he is talking about being hurt. What?! Oh, a thorn in his "paw" - he has a stick of some kind in between his fingers & wants me to play doctor. Right. Grab it, pluck it out & as I toss it on my side table I feel the eraser tip. Eraser = Pencil. Groggy brain makes it's way to the fact that we only have pencils in the kitchen.
ALRIGHTY THEN! Mommy's awake now. Off and running to check for signs of damage, first on my son, next in the apartment.
My love, my big strong boy, who has been braking out of baby proofed areas since he could walk. In our place, the daycare, friends' places & public spaces... What he can't open, he climbs over. If he can't scale it he will just knock it over or bring the walls down trying. I know it sounds like I'm exaggerating, and I truly wish I was. We have gates up - but that's to corral the daughter, as they barely slow the boy down.
Thankfully it was only a pencil he found & decided to play with. A wandering toddler can get into considerable pain & trouble in the middle of the night - I know first hand.
I was probably younger than he is now, but I remember often getting up in the wee hours. Trying to be quiet, trying to do things for myself, exploring all the places & things I would have been directed away from if anyone, even my older brother, had been awake. On one occasion my nightlight had burned out - so naturally I stuck a nail I'd found someplace in my wanderings into the light socket. Yes, it was shocking to say the least. Another time I climbed up onto the sink in the bathroom so I could reach my dad's razor in the mirror cabinet. I remember shaving. And I remember cutting myself, and my parents being horrified at waking up to my little bloody face by the side of the bed.
Although those are probably the two worst accidents I had, there were a number of others. Needless to say, my parents made some changes to keep me in bed & out of trouble. But there is only so much a parent can do. Particularly when your child is like a Houdini Monkey.
Maybe it's genetic, because my poor son seems to have all my sleep issues. He has always taken ages to wind down. He pushes himself to stay awake, refuses to nap unless he passes out, and rarely sleeps as long as you would imagine he would. Some nights he stays awake hours past his bedtime, playing in the dark, coming into our room, putting off sleep. Some nights he goes to sleep, only to be up at 2am all ready to play. Some nights are like last night - he was tired, fell asleep (getting up once because we forgot the nightlight), and seems to have slept through the night until a reasonable hour this morning. It's frustrating for all of us, particularly since there seems to be no real rhyme or reason. I feel like we’ve tried everything short of tying him to the bed or locking him in at night.
So, what's the answer?
I really have NO flippin' idea. I am open to suggestions, though.
What I DO know is all too soon we will have to take the front off my daughter’s crib. Another transition to a toddler bed - in the room she shares with her big brother. Which means we start sleep training all over again.
It also means the odds my being awake way too damn early are about to double.