Since it’s Labor Day, I’d like to tell you about the night shift in my house last night.
8:30pm: The boys finally go to sleep.
9:30pm: Mike and I go to sleep. It’s early for us, but we’re exhausted. We can’t even stay awake through an episode of “The Great Food Truck Race.” I think to myself as I drift off to sleep, this could be the best night of sleep we’ve had in a long time.
12:00am: Riley wakes up screaming. He has somehow fallen part way out of his bed. His head is hanging off the bed in the space between the bed rail guard and the wall. He isn’t in any danger, but for some reason he can’t find his arms to free himself. Mike rescues him and everyone goes back to sleep.
2:00am: Harry wakes me up to let him out. Yes, our almost seven-year-old dog has to be let out in the middle of the night to pee. Mike and I have come to accept this nightly ritual since we can typically let him out in a semi-sleep walking state and then fall back asleep, however, Dylan and Riley’s recent nighttime antics are causing us to feel less sympathetic.
4:00am: Dylan wakes up crying. I rush into the kids’ bedroom because if Riley also wakes up we’re going to be in deep s**t. Dylan isn’t usually the sleep problem in our house, but for some reason he’s up and ready to start the day. Nothing I can do or say will convince him otherwise, and if I force him back into his bed, he’s going to cry again and wake up his brother, which will result in me brewing coffee at 4am and that thought alone brings me to tears. I do something drastic. I bring Dylan to my bed.
5:00am: Harry, who trotted off to sleep in another room after his pee run earlier in the night, comes back and scratches at my side of the bed until I roll over to help him up. This is the second time Harry has woken me in one night, and I make a mental note to buy one of those portable dog staircases to lean up against the foot of the bed. Thankfully, we bought a king sized bed earlier this year so there’s room for all of us to toss and turn and occasionally doze. The only one missing at this point is Riley. Speaking of which…
6:00am: Riley wakes up, and Mike gets out of bed. Bless him. I’m so exhausted from Dylan and Harry that I could sleep until noon. Dylan, who had been surprisingly quiet in our bed and even fell asleep for part of the time, hops out of bed with Mike. Except for Harry nuzzling against my leg like a hot coal under the sheets, I’m alone.
7:25am: I hear the pitter-patter of Riley’s little feet coming down the hallway. He creeps right up to my side of the bed and whispers sweetly into my ear, “Mommy, I pooped. Can you change my diaper?”
Just another night (and morning) shift in the life of the Runaway Mama.