The early days weren’t easy of course, they aren’t for anybody, but for the past several years Alaina has been a great sleeper. It never takes more than forty five minutes of arguing to get her to lie down at night and more often than not needs to be woken in the morning to prepare for school. I find it strange that many of her toys seem to re-arrange themselves during the night, but as long as I don’t hear anything I just assume it’s another case of my memory not being as reliable as it once was.
What she is not very good at is acting like a reasonable human being when she doesn’t get the amount of sleep that she needs. It’s a common phenomena, not limited to her or even to children, but because I still remain in the unique position to have some semblance of authority over her I have taken a bold step to try and combat this emotional roller coaster. I’ve re-introduced nap time. For both of us.
The first few times went great. It’s happened less since she’s gotten an upgraded, much more comfortable bed in her room, but there are still a few nights a month when I wake up to an extra person beside me, usually breathing directly into my face. She loves our big bed almost as much as I do, loves sleeping almost as much as she does eating, and took surprisingly little convincing before joining me in a ninety minute afternoon siesta.
Today was different. A very late night and an early morning. Three hours spent swimming in the hot sun leading to nonstop whining interrupted only by the occasional yawn. Her own whining nearly as bad. A cold shower and I was ready for a rest.
She appeared to agree. We changed into our PJs, Tom and Jerry for her, Batman for me, and brushed our teeth.
That’s when the bombshell was dropped. She wanted to nap in her own bed, by herself, loaning me a few of her stuffed friends in case I got lonely.
I won’t say that I was disappointed to have the bed to myself, but her words stung. Was this just another example of her increasing independence? A trick to get into mischief while I slumbered unawares? My wife makes outrageous claims about my snoring and cover stealing, surely that couldn’t be a factor?
I’m afraid I’ll never know. She says that she slept, but I have my doubts. Two hours later a tapping on my shoulder from a hungry little girl led to a quickly prepared PB&J and a rush out the door towards our next adventure. Another summer night leading to a missed bedtime, another early awakening in store for the morning, and hopefully, another afternoon nap tomorrow.
It appears that my cuddle buddy has yet to be determined.