Alternatively titled: Sleep is for the Weak
It seemed like such a good idea.
We had wanted to go camping this week, but considering that the weather is not quite cool enough for a toddler who still needs a day sleep, we decided to put it off for a month.
To let the kids camp in the front yard in the camper trailer.
A fun, school holiday activity, which requires very little work.
We could not have been more wrong.
The night started well. The kids were snug in the camper trailer, and Boatman and I were in the lounge, taking bets as to how long they would last before they came inside.
I gave them 20 minutes.
Boatman gave them 40.
We were both wrong.
Apart from a few toilet and drink runs, they didn’t come out at all. In fact, they fell asleep, which left us with a dilemma.
What were we going to do?
The only option, it seemed, was for one of us to sleep out there with them. We couldn’t very well run the risk of leaving the front door unlocked, or Bailey (in particular) wandering around outside while we were sound asleep in bed.
discussion bartering bribing of sexual favours, Boatman drew the short straw and bunked outside, while I spread out on our bed with the aircon, playing on twitter.
Which is when the fun started.
I was about to pick up my book when Ava woke up. This was not entirely surprising, as she had had a marathon day sleep and I was half expecting this to happen. The easy solution was to pull her into bed with me, and turn off the light.
And that was it as far as I was concerned.
Meanwhile, Boatman was outside, lying on the floor of the camper trailer under the light of a full moon and a carport fluoro, contemplating how he could possibly sleep with so much radiance.
Out of nowhere, he hears a car approaching, way too fast. There is the sound of screeching brakes and then an almighty crash.
His immediate thought was ‘oh no! The car that can not be named!’ It was parked on the street, and being the
piece of crap alternative run around that it is, only has third party insurance.
Thankfully, for us, the car was fine.
Not so much the neighbors fence.
The sound woke the entire neighborhood, including our two eldest girls who sat bolt upright in bed, completely terrified.
Boatman left them there to join the street party that was converging outside, complete with firemen, Ambos and policeman and two young girls, barely old enough for P plates, who were miraculously unharmed, but completely distraught over their near miss with death. (Dramatic yes, but their car missed a power box by about one foot. Not sure what the ramifications of hitting said power box would have been, but I’m assuming it wouldn’t have been rainbows and puppies.)
Once it was determined that all was well, he returned to the camper trailer where Bailey was still pushing out Z’s whilst the girls sat with fearful anticipation. Seeing this as a good opportunity for further teaching about reckless driving, Boatman use the midnight object lesson and took both girls out on the street, where Taylah quivered with terror, and Bridie showed wide-eyed enthusiasm for the carnage.
Polar opposites those girls are.
Upon returning to ‘bed’ it soon became apparent to Boatman that sleep, considering the adventure of the evening, and the fact that the night looked remarkably like midday, was not going to happen. He instead set his mind to trying to convince the brave explorers to give up their camping bed and retreat to the house.
By this point Bailey was awake, which was quite possibly one of the worst things that could happen, seeing as he was convinced it was now morning, and time to play.
All three kids were staring at the sky, making shapes out of star constellation patterns, proving that any sleep, at this point, was completely futile.
Finally, Boatman convinced them to move the party into the house, with the lure of a midnight movie and ‘camping” in the lounge room.
A brilliant idea.
Taylah and Bridie, were happy to snuggle on the couch, and eventually fall asleep.
Bailey not so much.
He had had his sleep, he was done.
During all this, Ava and I were quite happily dreaming the night away. I didn’t wake up until Boatman moved her, and then feeling that updating Facebook on the nights proceedings was an inadequate debrief, woke me to tell me the convoluted story.
I honestly don’t know why we bothered going back to sleep after that.
Bailey came in about seventy thousand times, desperate to convince us that it was, in fact morning time.
Ava also decided sleep was for the weak and spent much of the night either in her bed crying, or in ours talking to the cat.
Of course she also did a poo.
And asked for her ‘bobble’ umpteen times.
And at one point Boatman caught her just as she was climbing off the bed saying ‘couch.’ It seems someone forgot to tell my youngest offspring the difference between the too bright full moon and the sun.
Good thing they are not vampires.
Somewhere, in the midst of all that chaos, the kids eventually slept, and we got in an hour or two uninterrupted peace.
Who knows really.
I don’t think I have enough functioning brain cells this morning to make an adequate estimate.
So that is the end of my tale.
Boatman would like to say that the moral of the story is that you shouldn’t listen to your wife when she suggests that the kids camp in the yard.
The parents of the girls in the car accident would claim that you should not drive recklessly.
I think the moral of the story is far more poignant than that. It is this:
Don’t let your 20month old sleep for four hours during the day cause you’re playing on the computer, and when kids don’t sleep: drug em.*
*disclaimer: I obviously don’t promote you giving your children unnecessary medication. But what’s the definition of necessary? 😉