3:00AM: My dreams are suddenly overtaken with the sounds of children’s playful laughter. Even in my dreams (which often don’t make sense) this is confusing to me. As my mind slowly wakes up I realize that the voices I hear (no are not in my head) are in fact those of our younger two Chicklets. I squint my tired eyes and take in the time only to realize that it is still the middle of the night (or for me less than 3 hours since I went to bed) and before I am able to logically make a plan of attack to round up two, now over-tired, hyperactive daughters, I drift off back to sleep……..
4:00AM: My brain is very confused…..I am hearing my daughters’ voices and I know that I am aware of why this is happening while my body is trying to sleep. Confused, my body fights between it’s desire to sleep and my brain urging me to wake up. Grudgingly, my brain wins…..and I am awake…..again. One squinty eye ( I wear glasses) focusses on the clock and realizes the time. Now I am furious….both with myself for having fallen asleep again, and my children for still being awake. Please…don’t judge my logic at this point in the night. I hear that laughter has been suddenly replaced with screaming and crying on part of my youngest and I quickly grab my spectacles and rush to the upstairs bathroom…
I open the door and mentally have to give my head a shake at the sight before me. Both of my girls are completely naked, sitting on the bathroom counter, feet in the sink, water running, and my youngest is covered head-to-toe in dots……HEAD-TO-TOE…..in some sort of greyish-purplish dots. BREATH…….1…2…3…4…5….6….7….8…..9…..oh forget it…..I could count to 100 at this point and it would not help! My brain, which is still not completely awake, struggles to take in this picture and pair it with an appropriate response.
It takes every fiber in my body to calmly ask my daughter what is all over her sister’s body. One continues to cry and the other begins to mock her younger sister. BREATH…….After asking 4 times while my youngest is screaming, “She did it on purpose!!” the other one finally says, “It is washable marker!” and proceeds to splash water on her sister.
4:30AM: I have sent the older of the two culprits back down to bed with threats of taking away her beloved “lamby” and focus my attention on my polka dotted daughter. She is still crying…..now she wants to shower…….Mama wants to go back to bed…..guess who wins?
After a quick 4 minute shower she dries off and I tell her it is time to go back downstairs to bed…….AND……the power struggle begins…….See, she does not like to sleep in her own bed. It is, “Not as cozy as yours”. This has been a nightly struggle since she turned 3 years old. The problem with this issue at 4:30AM on this particular night is that her older sister….and ROOMMATE….is also awake and will refuse to sleep by herself in their shared room.
So….I calmly say “no”……
she loudly says “yes”……
I calmly say “no”……
she screams “then I am asking Mommy”……
She asks Mommy and Mommy (answering in her sleep) says “yes!!!!!”….
She says “nay…nay…..nay….nay….nay”…..
BREATH……BREATH…….At this point I really truly think that God took pity on me because before she could just storm off in victory and claim her spot in my bed my youngest Chicklet had to find her “meemee”. This is her special blanket which goes everywhere with her. As an answer to my brain begging God to let me go back to bed, she announces that her blanket is downstairs. As we go downstairs I hear whimpering coming from a covered laundry basket….yes….you guessed it….my other daughter (whom I had sent to bed with threats of taking her “Lamby” away!
At this point my voice is no longer calm…..it raises…..a little……as I tell them I will calmly count to 5 and if they are not in bed by then their special friends will be taken away until AFTER school.
1………..2……my middle daughter has decided that Mama is serious this time and quickly gets herself moving to her bedroom…….3……….my youngest daughter finally realizes that Mama
is might be serious this time and slowly gets up off the couch and moves towards the bedroom……4……..
At this point they are both inside the appropriate room, one is in bed, and the other one is rolling around her bed laughing and screaming (can we say OVERTIRED!?!?!). I quietly remind them of what will happen if either Mama or Mommy (who is somehow still snoring upstairs) have to come down again because anything other than sleep is happening in this room, we will take away their special friends until after school tomorrow. And…….I leave.
4:45AM I have heard voices over the monitor for a few minutes now and come out to the dining room to talk to them over the monitor. I tell them that they are showing me that one of us will have to come down and gently remind them what they will loose if we do have to come back down into their bedroom. Suddenly the house is quiet. AMEN!!!!
5:20AM I am now completing this post and hoping that when I go back into bed this time I will be able to go back to sleep. See, I am a supply teacher and in exactly 40 minutes I could very well get a call to teach today. So…..I post this and leave you in search of sleep….because even if I don’t work today less than 3 hours of sleep will NOT make for a happy Mama.
Thank you for listening to this rant…..and……good night!