I Could Have Told Him So

Posted: April 15th, 2009 | Author: | Filed under: Friends and Strangers, Husbandry, Misc Neuroses, Other Mothers, Parenting, Sleep | No Comments »

Fearful as I am to do so, I have a confession to make.

For some time now—several months, really—despite the fact that I’m a mother of a one- and three-year-old, I’ve been getting blissful, uninterupted nights of sleep. Just like normal people without kids get.

I mean, with the exception of a trip to Lake Tahoe a couple months ago, which had us all bunking in one room and therefore victims of Kate’s nocturnal verbal outbreaks (and door-banging trips to the potty), my blissful nighttime slumber could be in some kind of Serta Sleeper TV ad. Okay, so my hair gets a lot nappier from sleep than those mattress models’ apparently do, but STILL. What I’m sayin’ is we put those kids of ours to sleep in the evening, and God bless ‘em, we don’t hear from them again ’til morning.

So Saturday we visited our friends Kristen and Suneel and their delicious 5-month-old Jackson. (Total future husband material for Paige.) At one point Kristen turned her tired eyes to us, and looking almost uncertain whether she should even venture to do so, asked how sleep was for us at this point.

Now, I’ve passed through the portal into parenthood, and as part of that process I’ve been fully indoctrinated in Belief in the Mighty Power of Jinx. Particularly when it comes to discussions of successful sleep patterns. Aside from it being socially malodorous to brag about one’s child’s good sleep–especially to other potentially sleep-deranged parents whom you’d like to retain as friends–it also inevitably brings into play the potential for the good sleep spate to, well, shit the proverbial bed. For karma to spit in your eye and say, “Ten hours of straight newborn sleep, you say? Well here’s a night you won’t soon forget.” [Roll track of demonic laughter.]

This is all to say, as much as I wanted nothing more than to allay this new-Mama friend’s anxieties about how many years of crappy sleep she was staring down the barrel of, I was also—selfishly, I admit—fearful to even answer her question.

Blessedly, that night, despite having uttered aloud that our sleep was actually quite good these days, thank you, our familial sleep groove went unaffected.

But then, Mark had to duel with fate. And out of the blue in the kitchen last night, he mentions all casual and stuff, how we never even had to sleep train Paigey Wiggle in order to arrive at her current state of excellent sleep-through-the-nightery.

You think you know someone. But what ON EARTH would compel him to utter such a thing aloud?

Yeah, yeah, it’s painfully—exhaustingly, ahem—clear where this is headed. Which is to say that Paige decided to enter an unprecedented middle of the night cry-a-thon last night. In her 15 months of life the girl has not bawled as much as she did last night. There was cacaphonous wailing, and possibly even rending of garments, though it’s hard to tell with those feety pajamas. The girl had me out of bed three seperate times, alternately shoving my breast and/or a dropperful of Tylenol into her mouth to quell her insistent wake-the-whole-house-up-when-it-was-really-otherwise-quite-cozy-in-bed fury.

Finally I just decided to hold and rock her for roughly EVER until I was certain she was in a deep deep sleep and any small lurches of my body didn’t make her fear I was going to set her back into her crib and re-ignite the earsplitting wail. As sleepy as I was, it was pretty damn cute that a few times as she was about to doze off she’d wake herself up to reach her arm out to make sure I was still there.

Still, my sleeping uninterrupted would have been cuter.

The whole incident made me want to get in the car and drive like a crazy lady the hour-plus trip back to Woodside to pound on Kristen and Suneel’s door at 3:30AM—when, God knows, they may well have been awake with their baby anyway–to tell them how horribly terribly sorry I was to have forgotten the most important piece of parenting information I could ever hope to impart to dear friends such as them. Whenever it is that wee Jackson does start sleeping like a champ, for the love of God, DO NOT UTTER A WORD ABOUT IT BETWEEN YOURSELVES OR TO OTHERS.

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