This morning I woke up ten minutes before my alarm went off, with a strange and unusual feeling. What is this? Oh right! I feel rested! I kind of forgot what that felt like.
A friend with a nine-month-old baby was telling me the other day that the baby still wakes up once or twice a night, and I tried to look and sound as sympathetic as possible, but the fact is that Jake, who will be FOUR in a few months, wakes up once or twice a night, at least half of the time. Now, I hasten to add, when he wakes up he needs little more than a pat on the back or maybe a kiss, and we are both back to sleep. In fact, the trip to his room and back probably only accounts for thirty seconds of my time, and because I’m so used to these middle-of-the-night interruptions, they really don’t affect me.
But the boys have been a bit short on sleep these days, and it has started to add up for them. Normally I think they are very well-rested, but it’s tricky to ensure adequate sleep at this time of the year, what with the sky being bright from 5:00 am to 10:00 pm and everything. Add soccer, school, and lots of outdoor play to the mix and you get two very tired boys. Tuesday night Jake woke up seven (seven!) times and was clearly so over-tired he just couldn’t settle back down. Then yesterday he and Mark played pleasantly together all day. Kidding. Of course with that kind of sleep deficit, their behaviour was somewhat hideous and bratty, and I felt like I was slowly going insane. With MY sleep deficit tossed into the mix, you can well imagine what our harmonious household was like: about as harmonious as the “parades” that occur with some frequency around here, which are comprised of the kids playing a harmonica, banging on a cowbell, and shaking maracas all at the same time.
Yesterday was also the preschool family picnic, and let’s just say that by the time we were in the car going home there was quite a lot of whining, complaining, and general discontent. Amazingly, I was alert enough to realize that they were not evil demon-children, but actually really tired children. It’s funny how I can sometimes forget that, and think that they are just out to get me. Anyway, after dinner there was much shrieking and sobbing about ridiculous things (“Mark squirted me with water! My bubble wand isn’t working! I have no feet!” and “Jake is crying too much! He said your flower is purple, but it’s really purply-pink! I don’t want a snack!”) and so I made the executive decision to put the kids to bed a full hour earlier than normal, and they both slept solidly for twelve hours. Suffice it to say that today has been much, much more enjoyable. Actually harmonious, no cowbells involved.