It’s bedtime and both children are sobbing. Well, little boy is sobbing with a plaintiff cry saying, “Mommy, I’m crying. I want water. I’m crying”. Little girl is just standing and screaming – really loud. I go through the mental checklist: Injured, feverish, teething, constipated or just plain old tired?
I’m pretty sure they’re just plain old tired, but I’m not feeling The Love tonight and I don’t think my level of calm patience is quite what it should be. I want to send a snotty message to my boy and say, “Fine – sleep on the floor if you don’t want to be in bed”. I want to pretend scream at my girl, “Arrrrrrghhhh!”.
Neither of these things I will do. First, I think it would be mean. Second, it would make everything far worse. They’d both break down into insconsolable tears. I’d feel even grumpier and even more powerless and they – this is the big one – wouldn’t trust me to get them through their stuff.
They are two tired little bumpkins. I opt to go downstairs, use the bathroom and come back up in a more loving mood. I take a couple deep breaths and re-enter their room. To my little boy I say it’s time for bed and lo and behold, he gets in bed. I give little girl her binky and her little monkey and she lies down also.
Literally – literally! – they are both asleep in under three minutes.
Be Consistent and Trust That it Will Work Out – Instead, I let myself get riled and annoyed. I forgot my own advice as I do on occasions – could this have any connection with a touch of sleep deprivation???
(Side talk – last night I posted on sleep deprivation and thought it was kinda funny the experience we parents share. I went to bed at 11:30 feeling confident about the night and solidly knowing that the WORST of the sleep deprivation was behind me with the newborn stages and then, only TWO hours later I got a call saying I needed to go into work. Really? Yes. I was only there for a couple hours, but by the time I got home (4:00), little girl was restless, I was coughing, blah blah blah – four hours of sleep total for the night we were up having breakfast like any other day – today was not the best of days)
Be Kind to Myself and Recognize When Being Tired Makes Everything Harder – another needed reminder!
And how is the night ending – pretty a-okay. My husband braved the minus fourteen temperatures (six degrees, but the wind chill took it below zero) to get desert for the two of us, the kids are asleep, and I expect that statistically, I’m due for a somewhat decent night of sleep – I hope.