My 10 year old is nocturnal. Always has been. It is not unusual to find her wandering about at dark thirty. She fights sleep as though it is the most bitter of enemies.
When she first graduated to her big girl bed at the age of 3, we took to gating her into her room at night. Crafty as she was, we soon barricaded her in using TWO baby gates, one atop the other. Fittingly, we called it the cage. Because she was my first born, my mind immediately wandered to the dark side as I envisioned her wandering out the front door into the dead of night. Hence, the heightened security.
It didn’t matter that we had an alarm. And dead bolts. And electric fencing on all exits. Okay, kidding about the electric fencing. I just knew she would attempt an escape.
She began fighting me on naps just after her baby sister was born. Which was a pity because that’s the period that I experienced NO REM SLEEP WHATSOEVER. No sooner would I have them both down for a nap, then Emme would call to me to show me her empty sleeping pull-up sitting atop her folded pajamas, and LOOK MOM, I DRESSED MYSELF.
It was a battle I could not win.
She still resists sleep. Which is why caffeine is not an option in her diet. Today she uncharacteristically stretched herself out on the couch and closed her eyes while I was making dinner.
OH NO YOU DON’T, MISSY. NO NAPPING FOR YOU. If it wasn’t good enough for you when you were two, then you can just forget about it at 10. I had to go over to the couch and right her. Should even a 10 minute nap occur, precious sleep would be lost by all in the wee hours of the night.
She slinked off to her bedroom. DO NOT GO TO SLEEP, I called out to her.
Twenty seconds later she was snuggled down into her bedding, eyes closed.
I knew this called for evasive maneuvers.
I went to the kitchen to procure a sure fire remedy for NOT SLEEPING. The dreaded ice cube down the back.
Perked her right up. But I wasn’t finished yet. A few moments later, I heard her coughing and sputtering.
(insert maniacal snickering)
MOM! DID YOU PUT SOAP ON THIS ICE CUBE????
Revenge is best served chilled. Her dentist has warned her plenty of times that she shouldn’t chew on ice.
Maybe she should listen to those in authority.
You know what? Motherhood really does bring me countless moments of joy.