Karma is a Bitch

Posted: June 3rd, 2007 | Author: | Filed under: Friends and Strangers, Husbandry, Miss Kate | No Comments »

So Thursday night I come back from a dinner out with the mother’s group. And as I start to get ready for bed I walk from the bathroom where I’m brushing my teeth and washing my face to the living room where Mark is sitting to give him the download.

“Some of the babies are still not sleeping through the night!” I reported.

“Some can’t fall asleep on their own in their cribs!” I say between spitting toothpaste.

Not very charitable of me, as my mother would put it. I guess what I was trying to say to Mark was that we are pretty lucky with Miss Kate. She is doing a good job, and some of the things that we’ve now kinda taken for granted, are things that we should be grateful for.

But I didn’t really say that. I was gloating a bit. But I got my pay-back.

At about 10:30 while I was still awake, I heard Kate call out from her bed, “Mama!” as I was walking past. And it didn’t really phase me. If anything I smiled and thought, I’ll go in for a minute, arrange her blankies and she’ll doze back off. She almost never does this, so going in when she calls won’t start a bad habit.

In the middle of the night–God knows what time it was–Kate calls out, “Mama, uppy!” This is the annoying way she asks to be picked up, which dates back to our Easter trip to RI when Aunt Mary taught Kate a little game that had the phrase, “Uppity uppity to the wee house” in it. (The “wee house” of course being the armpit. Long story.) Somehow after that Kate started asking for “uppy” instead of “up” when she wanted to be picked up.

Sooo, back to the middle of the night. Here she is calling out, “Mama, uppy!” clear as a bell in the middle of the night. I was hoping she would doze back off, but she said it about 5 more times.

This was weird. Up twice in one night. But again, since she never does this I figured it wouldn’t hurt for Mark to just go in and quickly tell her to go back to sleep. But that didn’t work so well. First off, Mark didn’t think that was a good idea. So we had a delightful exhausted and grumpy exchange of varying parenting approaches. Then I won and Mark stormed off to Kate’s room.

She was not interested in Daddy, uppy, as it turns out. He tried to calm her down. He picked her up. He even went to the kitchen and got her milk (something we haven’t done in months and months in the middle of the night). When that all failed, he tried putting her back in bed and she was wailing.

But then she stopped. For 15 minutes. And as we are dozing off another, “Mama, uppy!” rang out. This time followed by crying. At this point it’s clear she is getting back at me for the not one but three other children I was gloating that she was sleeping better than.

Mark and I tried to tough it out. Since I won the last argument to go into her room, but that didn’t help, it was Mark’s turn to prevail, and he insisted that ignoring her was the solution.

20 minutes of hysterical screaming of “Mama, uppy!” was essentially Iraq prison torture to me. At one point Mark said he was confident she wasn’t losing steam, and could quite possibly continue bellowing “Mama, uppy” for a good hour at least.

So I went in. And all it took was me saying, “It’s time to sleep. Mama and Dada are sleeping [or should be, damn it]. It’s time for Kate to sleep.” And she didn’t even need to be picked up. Just wanted to know I was there, I guess. So I re-arranged her blankets and gave her a kiss and she was quiet as a mouse.

And I crawled back into bed exhausted and convinced that karma had dealt me an immediate and undeniable blow. Next time the mamas meet, my download to Mark will be all sympathy and no glory. I just can’t risk losing the sleep.

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