Sleep is apparently over-rated when you are the mother of four! If you are like me, you sometimes find yourself trying to re-live the glory days when you could stay up to all odd hours doing whatever you wanted (TV, COMPUTER, GAME NIGHT, BAR HOPPING, PHONE CHATTING, MOVIE WATCHING etc.) and then sleep until lunchtime...at least on Saturdays,Sundays, summer vacation, and all the important holidays. Well...those of us with kids know those lazy, fun days are officially OVER.Like long gone OVER! Because quite honestly, by the time our kids are old enough to sleep in until noon themselves, we will be older than old. Older than old people DON'T sleep in. I don't know why, but I don't know any are you crazy?, "My kids sleep from 7:00 p.m. until 8:00 a.m...I have never gotten more sleep in my life, mine are in bed and done!"Good for you then...(here is where I stick my tongue out, lol) But for the rest of us sleep deprived (for more than a year or 2 )moms...this is for you! My last two,Tank and Q are terrible sleepers and Tank only began sleeping overnight at age 3 and 3 months old. Q still gets up once or twice a night (most) nights!
Let's begin with the evening routine. If you are a stay at home mom(like me) with any sense of your complete mind and your sanity, your kids have a strict bedtime. Mine all go to bed at 8. Bath/Shower time is at 7:30. You brush their teeth(yes even the 8 year old needs some instruction,Dentist bills people, do you wanna shell out money for cavities and dental work due to lackadaisical brushing?), read them books,(have them read a book to you) say their prayers(remind them of the short version you prefer) and tuck their sweet crazy little bodies into their bedrooms... thinking you will close the door with a smile on every one's face and not see these little cute angel-babies until sunrise.(HA) If this is current reality/dream, I am guessing that a) you don't have any kids yet and think you can "sleep-train" or b) you happened to be blessed with one of those rare infants that sleep well. (and if you are, consider yourself one of god's chosen ones...really, that lucky!)
I look forward to bedtime, quite honesty, but I do not know any child that likes bedtime under 14. From the moment of the announcement, "It's bedtime
Then going into the(each) bedroom you go hearing, "Mom will you read me this?" Of course, you can bet that it will be the LONGEST
, most involved book on the bookshelf! "No,not tonight honey, maybe tomorrow, how about this one, it is so cute" as you pull out a easy reader and silently remind yourself to put the big one into the garage sale pile you have not had time to organize... and take note of who gave that book to your child in the first place anyway? Surely some distant family member who knew she would not have to be here each night to read it and just wanted to pass on the misery. And if you have 4 kids they surely will not all agree on the book so to stop the fights and more dragging on you read 4.Moving on....so once the books have all been read and the nightly reminders to "GO STRAIGHT TO BED"(complete with 3 sets of giggles and the acknowledgement of "we know mom" and the "look" that follow from you) . It is time to walk away. Right? No. Not here! It is now time to answer the many requests of "Can I have a sippy of water? Where is my Buzz Lightyear ?" (insert any item you know has been missing/gone and no one cared about till now?) " I wanted the Barbie pillowcase not the polka dot one, is it in the laundry? Mommy! You know I have to have my barbie one to sleep the best!" It's just too dark in here. I need my "doggy" light on. can you turn the sound soother up? I need the fan pointing to my face(LEGS,ARMS, TOES) It's too hot in here. I'm REAALLLLY HUNGRY can I have a little snack?" You quickly appease them efficiently while making your way out their door...finally closing it with a BIG sigh of relief and the freedom 4 in bed means. AT LAST, quiet. No CALLIOU, No tattling,crying, fighting, laughing, barking, meowing(when Q is a cat of course). You go to the bathroom and pick up all 4 towels ,all bottles of soap and toys and toothbrush mess. Next wipe the counter and sink down from the
Now an old pro you know it is not over. Because knowing it is not over you don't start the show yet and it is a good thing cuz someone is calling. You decipher which kid, in which room and remind your self to have patience and calmness as to answer 'YES,------------, (insert sweet ones name). New requests are made like " I want another kiss cuz you did not kiss me 2 times, just once." Goodness gracious I mean really!Another 2 to 4 kisses and hugs later you make your way back to the show. Just as you are coming to the first commercial break...you hear movement such as walking and can now sense which kid is on the move and make your way up the stairs with a mission."Momma,I have to go potty." What?!!! Didn't we go do that already, you were told to go, you know better than that_______(insert annoying ones' name), Now go". Are ya kidding me"Ugggh. And they know this tops ALL other delay tactics because no body wants to be changing any dirty wet bed sheets at
Finally, an hour or two of stress relieving alone time(zoning out time) for the very first time all day. When you head off to bed yourself, you have to flush all the toilets no one flushed in the last 4 hours, made all the school lunches and got the uniforms ready, loaded the dishwasher, loaded the backpacks and set them by the front door,pick up left over clutter in all rooms downstairs...you can finally collapse into the hopes of long, needed deep sleep....just as you are beginning to drift off ...the sudden and all well knowing sounds of baby/child #1,2,3,or 4 opening the door,