I’ve never really understood why when kids are tired they don’t just go to sleep.
When I’m tired, (so pretty much every waking hour of the day), I close my eyes and attempt to sleep, then toss and turn for several hours, singing ridiculously random songs in my head that I’m sure I have the wrong lyrics to (think Badlands); or worse, I start obsessing over some seemingly inane thing like the charcuterie board I’m supposed to “get creative” with in less than a week for my little cousin’s bridal shower.
I honestly have no confidence in my ability to pronounce charcuterie let alone craft deli meats or daikon radishes into bouquets of roses but I’m relatively sure it’ll just end with a whole lotta wasted prosciutto, sliced fingers and possibly some serious tears on the bride’s part.
No one should lose sleep over this. My husband certainly isn’t. In fact I started to tell him about it, my idea, you know… to make “a simple design with gold and…” that was it…six words in and he was out like a light, snoring like a horse or pony, (the one Yankee Doodle rode in on).
I should know. I sang said delightful nursery rhyme at least 65 times consecutively that same night, pretending to stick a feather and macaroni in my head, trying to recall if the old Doodle man was handy or handsy with the ladies. I’m raising my son to be respectful, right? I don’t want to send the wrong message here and don’t get me started on the second verse. Tasty pudding? Safety pudding? Pasty pudding? Why are all these songs about food? Finally I started singing Springsteen and he dozed off… almost.
In fairness, there’s always this like three to five minute window when I think he’s asleep but I’m not really sure and so I just lay there, trying to be very still and not make any noise and this is always the time of course the cat decides to come in and play a game of tag with my toes.
This never gets old apparently, this game of appendage attack but for me it’s short lived and I put her out in the hallway where she carries on like someone just asked her to get creative with a charcuterie board.
Junior is wide (the eff) awake when I return btw, galloping around the room like a pony with a diaper on his head, asking for macaroni and suddenly I’m really missing how easy it was to get this child to sleep with my boobs.
So now we lay down again or I lay down and he gallops around the bed, fence jumping over pillows, somersaulting across my back until finally he lands with a terrific thud on his head and starts screaming and screaming and sobbing. This poor kid is so overtired, he’s crying uncontrollably and so I start telling him this story, mostly because I can’t think of anything else to distract him other than my boobs which are currently still covered in Bandaids and so I tell him how “when I was little I was running and running and racing down the upstairs hallway and I wasn’t watching where I was going and so I tumbled and tumbled” and landed with a terrific thud not on my head but “on my teeth and they broke. “Mommy’s two front teeth were broken and so I couldn’t thay the letter S for a very long time. I had a lithp and the kidth would teathe me and finally my two front teeth came in, the grown up ones and I could say the letter S but sometimes if I’m really tired (or inebriated), I start lisping.”
He smiled. “Again”
“Again, the story.”
My husband continues to sleep like he ate Propofol for dinner, the cat continues to howl and somewhere in the vicinity of my daughter’s room comes what sounds like a subwoofer blasting something dark, tortured and definitely rated M for both mature and migraine inducing.
And so I tell my toothless tale more times than father and I went down to town along with Captain Good God will this child ever go to sleep and eventually, (somewhere between the hours of 11 p.m. and 2 a.m.), I wake up with a foot in my face and a cat on my toes and “hasty”. It was hasty pudding. Honestly, the things that keep us up at night, (at least me). In my next life I’m for sure coming back as my husband, (at least for the sleeping part).
Columnist Lesley Kirschner grew up quiet, in the woods, and devoid of siblings so her hobbies quickly became reading, writing, and talking to inanimate objects. She also spent a considerable amount of time doing voice-overs for her dolls and watching too much daytime television–channel 3, sometimes channel 8, if the weather was good and the antenna wasn’t acting up. She was in attendance at school, graduated from a very much not notable college not worth mentioning, and was transplanted to Wilton with her husband, Ambler Farm‘s Farmer Jonathan and their (baby makes) three children almost a decade ago. Although she never quite found her calling in life, other than perhaps the doll voice-overs, which in hindsight were eerily convincing, she’s happy to try her hand at writing and is thankful for the support and community she found on Facebook’s Buy Nothing Wilton. Lesley realizes while this is all very exciting, she’s not winning a Pulitzer so she’ll wrap it up and be quiet. She’s had a lot of practice.