Children are angels and they look divine when they sleep, but what if these angels refuse to let you experience their divinity? Well, the answer is a night full of plight and true to the words; it’s all quite evident in your dark circled eyes and the yawns the next day.
Motherhood introduces you to a new night life – the long sleepless nights, crazy sleep patterns, a ‘grab it or it’ll vanish’ attitude, towards a chance to snooze; tired looking eyes, skin and a dazed look, that manages to completely stick itself to your face; quite like the innocent looking, permanent parcel in your arms, now sleeping peacefully, oblivious to the havoc, he or she has managed to create, in your once peaceful nights.
However, normally this lasts only for the first few months and even if it does get a bit farfetched, maybe for a year. But, I completely sympathize and identify with the parents whose children take it as their personal responsibility to put their parents to sleep before hitting the bed themselves.
“Harassed” is the word that comes to mind when I come across them and hear their tales. It is surprising yet true, how a child not sleeping in time at night becomes equivalent to a stressful day ahead, a love life gone awry, a day full of slip ups and a routine all messed up, besides the heavy lidded you at office, mistaking your desk for the bed.
This because, my life too is full of such nocturnal struggles of managing bedwettings, night time hunger plus thirst pangs and bedtime story woes to somehow get my elder one to sleep; on time, before me and making it a habit with her.
Barring a few bonus nights, when I am granted the joy to peek out of the window and enjoy the beauty of the moon, take a deep breath and feel free to take my own sweet time to sleep; most of the times I end up sleeping before my daughter does; the last sight being her curious big eyes staring right into my face, trying to contemplate whether I’m asleep yet or not.
Having quite forgotten my childhood and the traces of any such traits in me as a child, I wonder cluelessly for how long will this continue.
Blessed are the parents I feel, whose children sleep on their shoulders as they head home from a late night party; and my sympathies with those, who have their little ones all fresh like lilies, chattering up and down the pathway as the parents fight to keep their eyes open, quite dreading what lays ahead.
I remember the days when every time I dreamt of a baby, the picture that appeared was that of a cute little one, sleeping peacefully in a bassinet. And ironically enough, the cute little ones did come in my life and so did the bassinets, but minus – the sleeping part.
I have left no tip go unpracticed, no suggestion left as it is, but alas, I see no results, as my daughter some way or the other, manages to stay awake beyond midnight, every night! And it scares me all the more for, my younger one who is eleven months old now and was following a nice sleep routine up till now, has suddenly started “chameleon-ating” his sister’s sleep patterns, each enjoying the others’ company, with naughty grins which give me the feel of a conspiracy in the hatching.
However, amidst the many suggestions that were passed my way, was one that said, “it’s time you put your kids to sleep in a separate room…” Quite practical enough! Shut them out and you won’t know if they are asleep or not, you sleep at your time and they’ll sleep at theirs’.
Quite tempting although it was, I somehow have never been able to get myself to do that yet. The reason being just one thought that comes to mind; it is only these first few, initial years, when my kids are small and need me by their side as they sleep. They need the comfort and assurance that mommy is looking over them and is with them, irrespective of the fact, that they ensure I doze off first. It is these few precious years when the bed time stories matter and the messed up cuddling is welcomed.
Only a few years before they’ll grow up and demand their separate space, separate rooms and uninterrupted time alone, quite forgetting the interruptions in our sleeps they love to create today.
It is only these few precious years before my children grow up, for which I prefer to take on the night plights, after all, the rest would be spent remembering these times.