Sleep my darlings. For the love of all things chocolate, shut your eyes and go the F to sleep!
My children wake up arguing with each other and this quickly disintegrates into all out war as they rush through to our room to get the coveted spot cuddled up to Daddy. The loser has to snuggle up in the middle – a fate worse than death if my children are to be believed. I would have thought the middle would be the place to be since they get snuggles with both parents, but apparently they just really don’t like me first thing in the morning. Once I’ve made their breakfast and run around after them for a while they start warming to me again and my hurt feelings can be put aside for a while.
As the day progresses they realise that they had it all wrong. They do like me; they just can’t stand each other. No, wait, I got that wrong too. They like me when I arbitrate in their favour, but when they’re clearly in the wrong and get a telling off they most definitely don’t like me. I only know this because, apparently, the sulky faces and screaming aren’t a big enough indicator, so they shout, “I don’t like you,” loudly enough for the neighbours to hear before throwing a toy across the room or slamming a door.
Fortunately my son starts kindy at 8.15am and I have four hours of just one child alternating between extreme love for me and epic tantrums over minor things. At pick up time I have a whole nanosecond of my kids being together again to enjoy before the fighting starts.
And people wonder why I’m looking so haggard these days.
Once upon a time I was going to be one of those Mums who didn’t let her children watch too much TV. Bwahahahahaha. I laugh at my naivete. I should really use the time that they’re glued to the idiot box to do something useful around the house but, stuff that, I need a break because soon it’s going to be Witching Hour when my children turn totally and utterly feral. A nice cup of tea and a sit down with a book are essential for regulating my blood pressure before it skyrockets when I tell my kids it’s time to brush their teeth. Tears, tantrums and outright disobedience are the norm before we finally manage to wrestle them into their beds. It’s their Dad’s job to tell them a story, then I go in and sing to them.
I have to start with Twinkle, twinkle little star, followed by the ‘close your eyes go to sleep’ lullably before finishing off with Skinny Marinky. This would be so much more soothing if my kids would close their eyes and relax while they listen to my dulcet tones rather than singing along; Missy Moo can’t hold a tune, whilst Master four has a beautiful singing voice which is somewhat marred by the fact that he’s physically incapable of singing a song without changing the words to ‘bum’, ‘poo’ or any other toilet humour he can think of.
Finally, after reading Goodnight Me to them, it’s time for them to settle down and go to sleep. I sit in there with them because otherwise we’ll spend the next few hours ordering Missy Moo back to bed. Master Four is pretty good at settling himself. He fixes his gaze on something, goes cross-eyed and gently falls to sleep. Missy Moo, on the other hand, needs frequent gentle reminders to close her eyes and snuggle down before she finally goes into her falling asleep routine:
- Close your eyes and make patterns with your hands in the air. I like to think she’s conducting an orchestra but I suspect it’s more likely that she’s trying to cast a spell on me.
- Sit up and demand to go to the toilet.
- Return to bed for more frequent reminders to close her eyes and snuggle down.
- Ask for a drink of water
- Close eyes and wriggle around for a while.
- Ask random questions
- Start rubbing nose
- Request tissue to blow nose
- Blow nose
- Lie back down and close eyes
- Pick nose
- Yawn (this is the moment I’m waiting for because it generally means sleep is imminent)
- Turn onto her side with head lying on hands.
- Open one eye to see if I’m still there. Repeat several times.
- Gently drift off to sleep.
PS I love comments so feel free to leave one below