Thursday, July 21, 2016

A Scheduling False Alarm

I must have been imagining things when I thought I set my alarm for a good sleep-in time of 8:00 because I didn't wake up until Benjamin started trumpeting through a paper tube outside my door at 9:30 this morning.

On Sunday evening we rushed through bedtime and had the kids in bed, with lights out, by 8:00, so the girls would be well-rested for their first day of school. Zoë, Andrew, and I somehow managed to be in bed by 11:00, which was probably the first time the baby and I had gone to bed before 2:00 in the morning in a couple of weeks (she and I have been sending Andrew to bed and then have been partying it up until 3 or 4).

I woke up to help do the girls' hair and make sure they had everything before sending them off to school with Andrew.

Then I woke Zoë up thinking, "This is it! Our chance to get her on a decent schedule!"

On Monday night Zoë again was in bed by 11:00. What wizardry was this? Maybe all that talk I've heard about "just putting the baby to bed" was true! Maybe it was "just that easy" to get a baby on a schedule! Why had I been suffering through unruly bedtimes for the past year when I could have "just" been putting the baby down at a decent hour (not that she was sleeping through the night, but still...I can handle a couple of nighttime feedings if only the baby would settle down for the night by 11:00).

I woke her up again on Tuesday morning. Part of the new, improved "schedule" I had her on.

On Tuesday night it happened again! She was in bed even earlier—9:00!

"Amazing!" I thought in delirious triumph. "Zoë has turned over a new leaf. She's fixed! She sleeps now. This is awesome!"

But by the time I had Rachel's birthday cake in the oven Zoë was up and screaming. She had a worse-than-usual night on Tuesday, which was great because I had to be at the pool for swimming lessons at 7:30 on Wednesday morning. And then I had to go visiting teaching, and then make a little compassionate service visit. When we got home I gave the kids lunch and started working on Rachel's birthday cake, and eventually got the baby down for a nap (and I took a little one, myself).

We spent the evening revelling our way through Rachel's birthday and had the kids in bed by 7:40, which means they were able to get in their beloved pre-sleep reading time that we've been neglecting the past few days because we haven't managed to get into bed early enough (not that they didn't read those days, just that they didn't get to read right before bed).

Zoë didn't close her eyes until 2:00 in the morning. She spent so much time screaming for no good reason (unless Mommy saying, "Lie down," is a good reason because if so, then she had a good reason) that when I finally gave up telling her to lie down and allowed her to just be up she pointed to her throat and said, "Ow." And I only stopped telling her to lie down because she was screaming so much I was afraid she was going to make herself vomit.

"Look who's back to normal," Andrew said, when I decided to stop trying to make her go to sleep.

"I guess so," I said. "And to think I had actually convinced myself that she had a new normal."

And I seriously had. It took me two (and kind of a half) nights of Zoë going to bed (though not to sleep through the night) at a decent hour (11:00 is decent, right?) to "forget" that putting (some) kids to bed is a real challenge. I found myself almost agreeing with those "schedule" people (the ones who claim their babies go to bed at night and take naps during the day—and not at all under duress (though I half-wonder if those children are a myth (except I have Miriam, so I know they do exist))).

"I'm afraid the past couple of days has been a fluke," Andrew said.

And he's probably right.

So here's to more late nights and early mornings and no "schedule" to speak of!

Oh, man! I just remembered the real purpose of starting this post was to say that when I got up and suggested we have breakfast Benjamin said, "I already had breakfast!"

"Did Daddy help you before he left?" I asked.

"No, I didn't see Daddy this morning," Benjamin told me (and that's probably true; I think the girls even took the bus this morning, which means that Andrew (and the girls) left the house before 7:00).

"Oh, then what did you have for breakfast?" I asked.

"Icing," Benjamin said.

He'd found the container of left-over frosting from Rachel's birthday cake and ate that (which kind of explains the wild trumpeting rumpus of a boy outside of my bedroom door (which continued while he was bouncing on my bed)). I suppose it was at least an interesting way to be woken up; far more interesting than being woken up by an alarm clock.


  1. Haha! Who needs sugary cereal when you can have icing for breakfast! :)

    Sorry Zoë's probably not "fixed." :)

  2. She is never going to be fixed...this is the way she is. Remember this when you decide to have another...Miriam is the fluke,this is your normal ;). Happy Birthday to Rachel. The cake looked great. I wake up every morning singing Hamilton songs...I blame you guys for that :)

    1. Exactly. "What is wrong with Zoë?" is really what that uncharacteristic sleeping was all about!

  3. What on earth is up with this kid... I seriously think I would have done myself in by now if I were you... :-/