Last updated on April 12, 2020
When A was an infant, he wasn’t the greatest sleeper. No, wait, let me rephrase that. He avoided the sweet blessed release of slumber like I avoid inclement weather…with a lot of screaming and making others miserable if it’s forced upon me.
He liked the awake time, is what I am saying here.
My oldest son would sleep if he was in the Baby Björn, if he was rocked, if he was in the stroller, if he was in the car. Wee little naps. Sleeping in the dark hours, while I tried to sleep, was a personal affront to him and to be avoided at all costs. He would wake every two or so hours and stay up for two or so hours. Do that math. Not pretty. There was not a lot of sleeping to be done his first several months. I also learned a valuable lesson: babies ain’t T-rexes. They can see you if you don’t move. In the dark. Through their eyelids.
When J was born three years later I about had a stroke when he slept five solid hours in a row, in the dark hours, at under a week old. Hand to god I did not know babies could do that. A didn’t do that until well after his six month birthday, maybe even a year. I really can’t remember, that whole stretch is a blur to me now thank god.
These days A is knocking on teendom and sleep issues are once again in da house, only now he can sleep like the dead well into the day and has learned not to wake me unless it’s one of the Big Four (Blood, Bone, Vomit, Fire). Now I have the intense pleasure of waking him up. As hard as it is, as long as it takes, as much as it sucks, I have looked forward to this for almost 13 years. I am not kidding and yes, I am that petty. I take a twisted and perverse glee in waking my child every morning. And it’s not like I’m trying to get him up at 6:30 for brick and mortar middle school, no. We’re talking 7:00 am once a week so we can leave for co-op by 8:00, and maybe 9:00 or 9:30 (if I’m feeling generous) the rest of the time. I never know how it’ll go, what kind of kid will wake, how long it’ll take. Today it was a solid 90 minutes, and that’s not even close to a record.
I call it Poking The Bear.
I enjoy it far too much.
But, to keep things fresh, I must come up with new and unique ways to wake him up, walking that fine line between
revenge humor and pissing off a half-asleep tween. “Dude! Get yo butt outta bed!” loses its charm quickly. But I never thought I’d say the things I have:
- Wakey wakey, eggs and bakey!! Only I don’t have time to make you eggs and the bacon is frozen solid, so, you know, just get out of bed already.
- <Repeatedly picking up and dropping a sleep-heavy arm on his head> Oh god he’s dead. But if he’s dead, why does he keep hitting himself over the head? I’m so confused.
- Helloooooo??? Anyone in there?
- <coffee breath>
- <He has a Timmy the ThinkGeek Monkey as our homeschooling mascot> Dude, you need to get out of bed before Timmy starts flinging poo at you. Don’t make your monkey fling poo! <I then get cotton balls and toss them at his face>
- KnockKnockKnock Penny…KnockKnockKnock Penny…KnockKnockKnock Penny… <thank you, Big Bang Theory, and yes I’m usually tapping on his skull>
- I’m about five seconds from smearing you in bacon grease and locking the dog in here with you. But, hey, the bacon is still frozen, so it’s a toss-up whether cold pork fat or ravenous dog licking will rouse you first. Your call.
- You will soon be the recipient of a wet willie, wedgie, or noogie. Pick your poison or stand up.
- I’m not tickling you….I’M NOT TICKLING YOU!!!! <Fingers waving tantalizingly close to bare skin>
- Don’t anger Carrot! Do Not Anger Carrot!!! <mumble: I didn’t set Carrot> Don’t anger your mother! Do Not Anger Your Mother!
Oh, there are so many wakings behind and so, so many ahead. I will continue to find great pleasure in this most miserable of morning activities, at least until I can get my hands on an alarm clock to take over for me.
It just won’t be as creative.