|July 25, 2001
How can I be mad at a face like this?
|One year ago (or thereabouts): Someday, should Eric's work take us to company headquarters in Wisconsin, we'll be able to keep warm by either wrapping ourselves in my beautiful handmade blankets or by burying ourselves in rolls and rolls of yarn.|
Most of the frustration disappears after a few hours of waking time have passed. I'm no longer the cock-eyed, mumbling idiot of a mother that I was, swaying in the breeze of the fan as she tried desperately to stay coherent. Still, I try to capture the passing feeling in the hopes of someday passing it on to the parents of my grandchildren - who, of course, will be perfect little angels at night, every night from birth.
"HAAAAAAAAAAAA!" I feel a thump against my belly, swiftly followed by another. I manage to open one sleep-encrusted eye. Staring me in the face through the darkness of the room is one very chirpy, very happy baby. He's dancing and singing with positive glee at being awake. "Aaa-aaa-aaa-AAA!"
Until yesterday night, this was our traditional morning ritual. At five he would wake up partway, slightly put-out and refusing to open his own eyes more than a crack in his efforts to find the breast. I would nurse him back to sleep very easily, where he would stay for about two hours. By seven-thirty he would be ready to greet the day, cooing and chirping and smiling at the light streaming through the window as he kicked his little legs in the air and waved his arms about his head. I would be slightly drowsy, still, but it's difficult to be upset with such an adorable little person who is so obviously thrilled to be sharing the morning with his mommy.
Yesterday night I was again awakened to the sounds of joy. I had barely lifted my head from the pillow before I realized that something wasn't quite right with this situation. For one, it was still pitch dark except for the light from the hallway lamp casting its glow across the bed. For another, Eric was still in bed next to us instead of being at work. Definitely not seven-thirty. Sam cooed at me as I tried to sit up.
"Eric, what time is it?"
I eyed my grinning son. He seemed all the more happy and proud of himself for being awake at an hour reserved for silence and sleep. His legs bicycled wildly and pummeled my stomach as I reclined beside him again, and his fist struck my chest and plucked at my nightshirt.
"Samuel, it's not morning yet. Go back to sleep," I murmured to him. He kicked in silence for a moment before chirping back to me; he was obviously far too happy to consider going back to sleep, thank you very much.
I sighed, tried to remember what the parenting books had said to do in situations like this, and finally decided that he was perfectly fine, obviously not in need of any of my assistance, and drifted off to sleep. He must have followed me soon after, and before I knew it, it was five o'clock and Sam was pawing at my chest and grunting.
Last night found us repeating the conversation. "Samuel, it's only two o'clock! Go back to sleep!"
He was much louder than yesterday, shrieking his approval of being alive and alert. One of his kicks struck Eric in the back; Eric didn't even grunt in response. It was apparent that I was the only one being bothered by the antics of our happy son.
I tried playing dead; Sam just cooed into my face and punched me in the chest. I tried rolling onto my back, but he scooted closer to me and raised his voice. Don't you see, mommy? Awake is so much more fun than asleep! Come play with me! I want to sing!
Eventually he fell back to sleep...only to wake again at three, three-thirty, four-fifteen, and four-forty-five. When Eric got up for work, he saw two little sparkling eyes following him across the room.
"Has he kept you up all night?" Eric asked with the innocence of one who'd gotten a full night of luxurious, dream-filled sleep.
I grunted in response and muttered, "If you love me at all, you will not turn on that light." He retreated to the bathroom, escaping infant songs and spousal threats. Sam remained awake for the rest of the morning, taking shut-eye breaks only for the occasional nursing - just long enough to raise my hopes before dashing them to the ground by pulling away and vocalizing. "Mmmmmm! Ah, ay!"
Today, as God is my witness, he's staying awake as long as is humanly possible. We're going to dance, sing, and have our legs kicked for us, if we must, so that when we finally go to bed we can have a hope of actually staying asleep for more than a few hours. I'm feeling all right at the moment, but this cannot remain our new permanent schedule. Daddy may be getting sleep and Samuel may not need sleep, but Mother certainly needs at least a few more hours of the stuff.
Of course, after taking a shower with me and nursing some more, he's now out like a light. What did I expect? He's a growing boy. We had our first doctor's appointment yesterday, where we were informed that if he continues to grow as he's doing, he'll likely end up around 6'1" or 6'2". That kind of growth apparently requires plenty of naps.