Saturday, February 15, 2014

It doesn't seem that long ago when I held my teeny-tiny baby boy in my arms and slowly rocked him to sleep every night. His soft little nose and face turned into my chest, and his warm baby breaths beating over my heart. The two of us wrapped in a blanket enjoying the quiet isolation of the nursery nightlight.
I cherish those memories.

I suppose I should be grateful that the night of nighttime rocking chair cuddles lasted as long as they did. It wasn't until the last three or four months that ToddlerBaby has decided he's done rocking to sleep with mom. Now, after rolling around on top of me for ten minutes he'll reach for his crib and signal that he's ready to fall asleep. Some nights he just heads straight for the crib, other nights he has to be put into it by protest. Protest rules more often than not.

When did bedtime become such a chore, and when does the script flip again? As an adult I can't wait to go to bed. Bed is awesome. Bed is soft and quiet and sleep is in bed, and sleep is the best. thing. ever. So why the major meltdowns now upon bedtime?

Last night was particularly harsh. Most night's ToddlerBaby will let me sit in the room with him and read him a book while he fusses and fumbles around until exhaustion takes over and he passes out. Last night though he wanted nothing to do with me. "OUT!" He screamed at the top of his little lungs. "MOMMA OUT!" I wasn't ready for this. I was having major flash-forwards to an angry teenager I hadn't allowed to borrow the car for some hot date with a tattooed girl wearing too much makeup and a nonexistent skirt. Who was this PERSON kicking me out of their bedroom?


Sad, angry and confused I entered the living room in a haze of bad parenting. "What did I do?" "How did I fail?" "If he hates me this much for just making him go to bed, how's he gonna feel about me when he really does want to borrow the car for some hot date with the nonexistent skirt?" "Is it all downhill from here?" My mind reeled at the possibilities that I had just entered some parenting hazard zone without a plastic suit.

I decided to try again. I headed for his bedroom, still able to hear his screaming about basketball, tricycles, applesauce, and anything else he wanted other than sleep. I slowly opened the door. "NO!" He shouted, then threw his stuffed animal at me. "NO, NO MOMMA!" I slinked back out through the bedroom door after my quiet attempt to reassure him I still loved him even though he was acting like a total SNOT!

I went back into the kitchen and proceeded to listen to the screaming for another two minutes or so. Then silence. I thought to myself, "Okay, he's out. I'll head back for the door and just make sure he hasn't completed stroked out or gone into shock." I was just about to reach for the doorknob when I heard it. "Daddy. I want Daddy."

It starts.

Whatthe... Daddy? Daddy?!

Upon hearing his name, CoffeeMaker exits the bathroom (which he's been hiding in for the last 45 minutes) and with a nauseating confidence enters ToddlerBaby's room. Seriously?

"Daddy's here buddy. Daddy's here."

Don't get me wrong. There have been plenty of times when I wanted him to want Daddy. Oh, like the entire first year of his life maybe. How about two, three, four, five and six A.M. for the last 24 months. Diaper changes. Airplane travel. Any of those times would have been awesome for him to want Daddy. But did he choose those times? No. He chose bedtime, the one time that mom actually enjoys and looks forward to, he gave that to Daddy tonight.


I'm sure kids learn manipulation at a young age. I probably did. I'm convinced my son will be a ninja at it. If mom pisses you off, schmooze dad. If dad pisses you off, schmooze mom. The kid will be President one day mark my words.

For now though, the joke is on daddy, because when bed time interferes with SportsCenter, mommy will be hiding in the bathroom for 45 minutes with a nice big bottle of wine.

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2 comments:

  1. So cute, Megan! Oh... how I can relate to bedtime struggles over the years with my four! It used to be one of my favorite parts of the day... the rocking, cuddles, books, & bedtime prayers. Now... it is such a feat with them getting older. I have to work myself up to get through it when my husby is away for days on end at the fire station. Sometimes I literally cheer walking down the stairs when all four are safely tucked into bed for the night! :)) xoxo

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    1. One is a major battle, I can't imagine four, especially on my own when CoffeeMaker is on the road with the team. You deserve a medal…and a parade…and a pretty pink pony. :) GO MOMMA!

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