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Tucking them in

May 5, 2011

Forever & ever, I’ve tucked my girls into their beds at night.  I crawl into bed with them, I scratch their backs, I tell them I love them.

As they’re getting older, there are occasions where I don’t make it.  They fall asleep before I get home from an outing, or I am working at home and fighting a deadline, and I lose track of time and I don’t go in until they’re already asleep.

Mouse will berate me the next day, if I don’t make it in before she’s asleep.  “You didn’t say goodnight to me, and so I slept badly.  I kept waking up.”

Lemon doesn’t berate me.

But Lemon also can be hot and cold about whether she wants me to say goodnight to her at all.  Does she want me to say it from the door? Sometimes.  Does she want me to lie in bed next to her and pull her close, like when she was wee?  Sometimes.  Should I just sit on the edge of her bed and rub her back a bit? Sometimes.

The biggest struggle with her lately is her own bedtime.

Last night, I said goodnight to Mouse at 9:45 (15 minutes earlier than her actual “bed time,” but she’s still catching up after a crazy weekend).  I popped into Lemon’s room a few times over the next 45 minutes to check on her homework.

She had crew from after school – 6ish, and then had to jump in the shower because she felt disgusting after being rained on after being sweaty.  Then she had to wolf down food and run to her therapy appointment.  She didn’t get home until 8:10, and still had to start her homework.

But then there was this diversion, where she wanted to go back to her dinner that she had to leave behind … to find that WD and I picked at her plate while she was gone until all that was left was the “gross noodles!” [She is not a fan of pasta … I really don’t understand it.]

So she was angry.  She yelled.  She was rude.  I was watching a two minute preview of a summer Anne Hathaway movie. Two minutes.  She came in to demand that I solve the “you ate all my food” problem, and I just wanted to finish the two minutes.  I told her so.  She said (loudly), “but I’m hungry NOW!”  So then she got sent to her room.  I finished my preview (two minutes, people!!) Then WD and I looked through the kitchen, and I went to make up with my sour child.

“I’m sorry I yelled, Mommy.  I was just frustrated, and I’m hungry, and I have lots of homework to do.”  I said, “well, we’re sorry that we ate your food.” (!!!!)  In our defense, we really thought she was done …

So then I made her an omelet.  With chicken and green beans and lots ‘o cheese, and onions.  It was a 3 egg omelet, and I put an entire chicken breast in it, and a couple or few dozen of the super-long green beans, and half an onion.

And she ate the whole thing.  On top of the 1/2 dinner she ate before.

Crew makes her hungry.

While she ate, we chatted a bit about crew, and how she wants to try to find a way to do a summer program in the mornings or evenings, as well as her all-day-long day camp.  There may even be a slight chance that she is going to ask me to eat my $400 deposit on the all-day-long day camp so she can just do a crew summer program.  This child loves herself some crew.  (And even if I have to eat the $400, I will save $2600.  So.)

Then she went back to homework.

At 10:15, I found my way to my bed with my iPad.  I was going to read, but instead just farted around.  I checked in a few times, and she was still doing homework.

At 11:15, I turned out my lights.  WD had come to bed, and we had shut our door most of the way.  He had told Lemon we were going to bed.

At 11:20, her light went off and I heard her tentatively say …. “mommy?”

And I ignored it.

I was half asleep, I was very tired.  If I got up, I would not be asleep before midnight.

And I woke up feeling bad about it.

She’s going on 15.  She doesn’t always want me around.  But sometimes, she does.

But still.  I need my sleep.

I’ve tried going in and spending time with her before *I* fall asleep, but she still looks for more before she goes to sleep.  I’ve told her I think it unfair, because I’m tired.  And I have to get up and go to work in the morning.  But she just pouts and says, “I just want to be with you!”

And who can resist that?

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