Monday, June 28, 2010

Reflections on a Full Night's Sleep

This weekend we had the opportunity to attend a wedding in Waterloo. The bride was Bre, my best friend and co-intern down at Disney's Animal Kingdom in Orlando. TJ's parents kindly offered to take Topher all day Saturday and overnight so we could take our time at the reception. As we drove away from their house, Topher was playing basketball and waving and we could see him saying, "Bye mom, bye dad" repeatedly. He loves his grandparents so much that he wasn't upset in the slightest, and that made it SO much easier to relax and enjoy ourselves. The car ride was about 2 hours (I was glued to my Kindle and TJ was driving and listening to the iPod which was plugged into the car stereo. In case you wonder why I never know how to get anywhere, it's because I'm never, ever looking at the road, I'm always reading.) We really love being in the car alone, no offense Topher. It's so calming and easy and fun. If we get lost, it doesn't matter. If we want to stop somewhere, we just do. And I get to sit up front the entire time. Enjoying our car ride
The wedding was great, if not a bit stifling in the heat, and Bre looked gorgeous. We stayed at the reception a couple hours but knew we needed to make the drive home at some point.
Me and Bre at the reception
The drive home was even better, because it was growing dark and all the hundreds of wind turbines were flashing like Christmas lights out in the fields. We got home around 10pm and got ready for bed.
It is the strangest sensation laying down knowing that you won't be getting up until the following morning. It almost felt too quiet, too much of a good thing. When morning came and we woke naturally (naturally!), TJ told me it had stormed loudly all night. I never heard a thing. The night was one long, black oblivion. And not only that, but we could just lay there. There was absolutely no reason to rush, no voice demanding attention from the next room. Just a lazy dog snoring away and a cat curled up by my head. Basically, it was heaven.
I did miss Topher very much. I always do when he's not here. But I think it's okay to revel in the precious few moments I have alone with TJ, too. And since the last full night's sleep we got was the last time we left him overnight with the grandparents, I think it's okay to revel in that, too. We felt brand new after all that sleep. We wondered what it would be like to have that feeling every day.
TJ's parents are wonderful people and gifted grandparents. Topher ADORES them and their farm. When we came to pick him up, I opened the door and he was sitting at the table, having a breakfast of crackers and juice. He looked at me, gave me a smirk and said, "Mom." Then he turned around and continued eating. (Can you tell how deeply upset he is when we leave him???) Topher had new sippy cups, new clothes and pajamas, and new gardening toys. Terry and Kathy didn't complain one ounce, even though Topher had been up awhile during the night. They just said how wonderful he was and how much they loved spending time with him. Seriously, my in-laws are the BEST. We can never thank them enough.
Topher showing off his new ant pajamas
If only he could do this...for longer :(
Last night it was back to reality, only worse. Topher was worn out from the farm and church, so he fell asleep before 8pm. This was a HUGE mistake. He was up at 1am, and didn't go back down until about 2:45am. Then--and this is the best part--he was up again at 3:30am and never went back to sleep. That's right. It's only 6:30 am and Topher has been up and active for the last 3 hours with no intention of slowing down anytime soon.
I don't know what it would be like to repeatedly sleep all night. I don't remember how it used to be. All I know is that it is one of the major reasons we've never even considered having another baby. And yes, I know at some point he will sleep better, or at least be old enough to lock in his room or bribe or whatever it is that parents do. But for almost 2 years now we've been continuously sleep deprived and
I know we don't have a lot of room to complain. Topher is healthy and happy and well-adjusted. He's beautiful and funny and curious and cuddly. I love him more than I love filling my lungs with air.
And yes, I even love him more than I love sleep. But I do love sleep, at least from what I can remember about it.

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