My youngest child can't sleep and his hell is mine. It's not that he is even cranky or unpleasant about it. In fact he is so freaking sweet that I get a cavity each time he comes in to tell me a new poem, deep thought or contraption he has dreamed up while laying wide eyed on the bottom bunk below his soundly sleeping older brother. He wants to sleep, but it seems that his head has other ideas and he tells be about all the pictures he gets in his head and how they will not let him shut his eyes until they are done.
The problem with this scenario is not him.. it's me. I need some firm and defined "time-off" from being mommy/homeschool mommy/ font of all answers to obscure questions that even Ripley knows not the answer. The few short hours between 8pm and 10 pm each night is the time I take to recharge my personal batteries and when I don't get that I get a weee bit grouchy. So far I am dealing with this OK, but I can see that I am fraying at the edges and have been looking for solutions to help him sleep and me to cope with things until he does.
Of course this has spilled into other parts of my rather tidy and well controlled life ( stop laughing!).. no really it has. .. This is how it's SUPPOSE to go.. in fact it's gone this way for YEARS.. ( yes I am a creature of habit, I even use the same flavor toothpaste I used in highschool..sue me)
7pm family dinner, everyone at the table ( just call me June Cleaver)
7:30 Young boys up to get ready for bed, clean up /shower/Pj's/brush teeth
8pm ( Maddie now OFF DUTY )Les reads boys a chapter of their book or until 8:30
8:30 Boys into bed
Maddie-.. sews, surfs blogs, ignores HUGE pile-o-laundry that needs to be folded till 10 pm
10Pm- up stairs to take bath or shower with husband - it's all about water conservation ( stop laughing again!)
10:30 Marital enrichment..uh yeh, most every night (Edited to say that in fairness it's more life 5ish night per week given all life that life throws in my direction, but yes and I think it is an important part of my marriage not to mention that it means that my husband is one happy camper, treats me like a goddess and I get just about anything I want... it's a good deal)
11 pm SLEEP till 8am the next day at which point I arise like Sleeping Beauty complete with birds twittering and small rodents bringing me slippers and a satin dressing gown. .. HONEST!
Now it's a whole "nuther" ball of Cheetos!... things are good right up until the boys are tucked in.. and in fact they are even good for 20-40 more minutes. Often enough time for me to think that i am in the clear.. but no. Soon enough I hear the rather distinctive noise of footy-pj's on the stairs and see a little smile peeking through the hinge opening on my studio door. .. first a hug, then a drink, perhaps a metered verse rendition of his latest poem... back to bed.. 20 more minutes and a trip to the bathroom and another hug and commentary how he thinks I might be losing weight since my butt does not look so big in my office chair anymore ( nice to hear!) A visit while DH and I are in the tub, " mommy, I didn't know we had any bubble bath!" A visit while DH and I are NOT in the tub.. knock knock knock... "mommy, your door got locked by accident, I will go get a screwdriver to fix it!".. Finally some time after 1 am he falls into an coma and I just need a drink but am too tired to even go down and pour a glass of wine.
I do know in time this will pass, it has with each of our children and I am doing my best to treasure the moments in my haze of exhaustion. It's a time of exponential cognitive growth on his part and I see evidence of it each day as he explains his 6 year old take on the Big-Bang theory or the merits of soft ice cream over scoop. Each idea thought out to the point that I can see what his little head has been doing each night and find it a marvel, a sleepy marvel.