I wondered as to whether I would be able to pick a subject related to Joseph, talk the death out of it and then move on. Or at least move on for a few months before I felt the need to go over it again. I decided tonight, that it wouldn’t be the case and I find myself needing to discuss sleep again.
It’s 8pm as I start this but I know now I won’t be finishing it tonight. In fact, I had to push myself to start it whilst my emotions were darting around so I could articulate my feelings at this moment in time.
Skip back to the weekend. The parents reading may be able to recollect those times pre-kids when the weekend was a time to have a lie in and generally kick back. Parents who still experience this, I have no desire to know you so please don’t disclose this to me! Weekends for me, are no different to a weekday. It’s where we find ourselves generally running around ensuring the kids get to their activities and catching up with household chores. If I’m really unlucky, Joseph may just get up that little bit earlier. Last weekend was was one of those weekends. I heard the familiar little noise which suggested someone was out of bed. These days, it could be one of 3 and not just the hot favourite. Generally speaking, Joseph would know to stay in his room but tends to gather a collection of toys and his torch and play in bed. I looked at the time on my phone and saw it was just after 3am. I wanted to shout out loud “WHAT THE FUCK?” but decided to calmly walk to Joseph’s room to check what was going on.
I asked him whether he needed the toilet “No thank you” was the reply. I needed to check in case we were in danger of another peeing on the floor episode. There was a collection of aeroplanes in bed with him and I put them away and told him it was night time and that he needed to go back to sleep until the sun was out on the sleep clock. By the time I had walked back to the room, carefully avoiding falling over the top step on the landing and mulling over why he would be waking up in the middle of the night, I was wide awake. I suppose Joseph and I are similar in that once we are awake it takes a while for us to get back to sleep again. For me, I guess it’s partly because I know there is no point going back to sleep, as I will be back out on the landing soon enough.
After cursing him, cursing myself and inwardly cursing Kev for snoring, I must have eventually dropped off, only to be woke by the familiar hum coming from Joseph’s room. I’m not sure whether everyone else in the house are deep sleepers or whether I am in tune with his buddhist-type hum but nobody ever seems to stir. I looked at the time (5am), went back to his room and go through the same routine, “Do you need a wee? Why are you awake? Put your toys away, switch your torch off, stay quiet and go back to sleep until the sun comes out on the clock” This time I pulled out what I considered my trump card “If you don’t go back to sleep, there’ll be no iPad in the morning” And then I went back to bed again, chuntering to myself and full of self pity and expletives. I considered whether he would ever go back to sleep or whether Sunday was destined to be a long day. The next time I heard him was 06:55 and considering the sun comes out on the clock at 06:35, I decided he must have gone back to sleep, as normally he’s watching for the sun to come out on the clock and immediately leaves his room, stands at the side of my bed with a cheery “Goooood Morning” like it’s 10am or something.
Usually once he’s had an episode of night-waking we’re in for a run of it. So on the Sunday night, I went to bed convinced I would be up early again. Fortunately it didn’t happen so I put it down to a blip. I never cease to amaze myself at my own naivety.
Monday night, I was in bed earlier than usual but still devastated when my 3am wake up call came again. I did everything almost identical to Saturday night but Joseph was taking no prisoners and was more defiant than usual. He told me to go away and leave his toys alone. I was mildly impressed with the formation of his sentences but still couldn’t bring myself to laugh. I had more visits to his room and he was louder than usual and had at least 13 metal planes in bed with him. I tried Saturday night’s trump card but he didn’t look phased by it.
By the time my alarm went off at 5:45, I felt like I had only just nodded off again. I was hoping he would sleep in later as I couldn’t hear anything from his room so assumed he was asleep. It seems that wasn’t the case though as Kev said that his appearance in his room coincided with the time the sun comes out on the clock. I had left strict instructions that he should not have the iPad so that he would understand that there were consequences for not going back to sleep. This is the first time I had actually threatened him with this for night-waking and now wondering whether it is quite harsh, given in all likelihood he cannot actually help waking or being unable to get back to sleep. He has asked about it on a number of occasions since coming home from school and I have explained each time why I couldn’t let him have the iPad and he has grumbled and thrown himself about a bit. In all honesty I feel exactly the same. He has told me how he is upset and I told him I was too. I don’t think he fully understands or gets my sense of humour, but he probably isn’t the only one.
Mid morning at work, I am already ready to take myself under the desk for a nap but life has to go on despite what is happening at home. Work is work and doesn’t just stop because I’ve had an early start.
Joseph still wanted to go to dance class and walk there and I wanted to crawl under a rock.
I’ve now taken him to bed and gone through our usual routine “If you need a wee, get up and go to the toilet. If the stars are out on the clock and you wake up, go back to sleep and if you don’t go back to sleep there’ll be no iPad again.” It may be an overdose of instructions, but I can’t leave anything to chance. I finished by saying “Are you going to stay in bed asleep all night?” His response, “No thank you, no sleep”
So, I’ll leave it there before I pass out myself and pick this back up tomorrow when hopefully, I will be reporting that he slept until 8am and we were incredibly late for school. Ha Ha Ha.