After making it through day one of our sleep time challenge, I was more confident in starting day two. I now had a framework to follow. I didn’t need Rocky, The Office, ninja mind tricks, or Yoda’s advice anymore. I knew what to continue with and what to fix. Sleep well, you will.
Naptime and bedtime went almost exactly the same as day one except there was no crying or whining. NONE! At naptime we went upstairs without a fight, and she crawled right in bed and said “go, nai nai.(night night)” It still took her 30 minutes to fall asleep but I didn’t have to stay in the room. Score! I actually had time to myself! I wasn’t cranky or frazzled and wanting to binge on junk food to calm my nerves and reward myself.
Bed time went a little smoother than the first day. This was getting easy. Maybe a little too easy? I had won the first bouts of the day, but would I win the third? Would there be a third? Was she saving up her crazies for the middle of the night? Would I be ready?
I went to bed at 11:30pm that night. I was hopeful for a complete night’s sleep, and turned the lights out.
12:30am. BANG BANG BANG. My body not completely asleep yet jolted up immediately. 12:30am!? Awww man! It’s too soon, it’s just too soon. I was lost. As I sat in bed blankly staring at the clock wondering what to do, you could hear her getting louder. “DaaDaa!” BANG BANG BANG “DAADAA!” Ugh! That cry, that whine! I bet this is what Axel Rose sounded like as a baby.
Aya offered to go in but that defeated the purpose. We needed to break this habit. It’s like after midnight she turns into another creature. The sun goes down and once the clock strikes twelve, she turns into a whiney door banging cuddly snuggly monster that only has a taste for me. It was my job to break the curse of the midnight monster.
Between the banging on the door and whines and screams, you’d expect a ferocious tantrum when you open the door. And one that’s worse because it’s after midnight. But not so. It’s just her tactic to get our attention.Â All she wants are hugs. She shouts “Daadaa!” but attacks me with a hug and tries to drag me towards her bed. “Sheep! Sheep! Fo! (sleep, sleep, floor!)” That’s why I end up sleeping cuddled up with her on the floor so much. Her monster-itis is too strong and too cute to penetrate and resist. And this is why she only requests me. She knows mom’s not gonna buy it. This cuteness is specifically designed to turn dad into a chump.
It puts a spell on me and I follow her every request. Pillow, yes. Blanket, yes. Floor, yes. Anything you want. It’s not until the morning when I’m sharing a pillow pet with her and a blanket that’s way too small for me do I realize what happened. But not this time. I needed to deflect her mind altering ray beams.
So what was my plan? To not look directly at her eyes. That’s how she does it. Her stare puts a hypnotic curse on me. I know this because every time I come in during the middle of the night, she makes me take my glasses off. And when I put them back on, she makes me take them off again. Smart cookie, I tell ya. It took me awhile to realize that wearing my glasses was my best protection.
After getting bombarded with hugs, I helped her back into bed, all the while avoiding eye contact. And instead of lying on the floor, I just sat there for a few minutes until she calmed down and fell back asleep.
After I left the room she did call my name a few times but she stayed in bed and fell back asleep until 8:30am. I had tamed the beast! I couldn’t guarantee the midnight monster wouldn’t be back, but at least I knew she could be defeated!
If I could maintain this progress for the next few days, I knew we could all be on a path to a happier night time. But when the clock strikes twelve, will the midnight monster walk again? We’ll have to wait until tomorrow to find out.