Thursday, April 27, 2023

Toddlers— so literal

 Sometimes I am THE WORST, and I don't even MEAN to be.

The other night, Minnie was off her routine. I think her naps have gotten too long again. For a little while there, Ben and I were both super good about waking her up at the exact 90--minute mark. But you know-- April the cruelest month (esp. in academia), etc, and her naps have crept back up to a couple of hours.

I had a late night on campus because I stayed until 7 so I could bing Coop home from dive, and when we got home, Minnie was happily splashing in her bath like a baby seal. She was thrilled to see me (I MISSED YOU HO MUCH) (I love that she cannot pronounce "s" at the beginning of a word and uses "h" instead). I was impressed that she was bathed before Dorothy even got home from dance and anticipated an early bedtime for her and for me.

But then! Midway through her interminable lotion/jammies/book/nursing situation, she was like I HAVE A TOMACH ACHE. DADDY TAKE ME TO THE DOCTAH. We weren't sure if she was saying that her stomach hurt or if she was recounting her Easter morning ED experience, but she got more insistent. She finally hollered I NEED A NACK.

She ate SO MUCH you guys! Banana, strawberries, a clementine, a piece of toast with peanut butter. Dorothy came home (Harry is THE EST-- he took her dance and brought his pre-calc stuff so he could study and wait to bring her home) and took a shower and I took a shower, and Minnie was still eating. She nursed, had a bottle and a refill in her crib (TERRIBLE FOR HER TEETH— I KNOW), and finally went to sleep way after 9.

At 1:00 she screamed MO BABA (which means “I would like another something to drink please”), and she never really fell back to sleep. We both slept sort of, listening to her talk to her toys and complain quietly. She started crying around 2, so I brought her to bed with me (I am too tired in the middle of the night to make good choices). She just laid there STARING AT ME. I would doze, and then she would just STARE until I opened my eyes.

After 45 minutes, I was like, “Minnie, it’s night night time. You gotta go to sleep so I can go to sleep. I can’t take care of you tomorrow if I don’t get some sleep.” Ugh— the library— making cookies— playing Lego, etc— all the things she wanted to do the next day and talked loudly about during her bedtime routine. They sounded like a lot on 3 hours of sleep.

Ben offered to go sleep on the floor in her room, so she could go back in her crib, but she said, “No. I nuggle in Dada’s bed.”

I happily passed her over to Ben, and, magically, all three of us fell asleep.

Somewhere in there, I changed my 5:40 alarm to a 6:30 alarm and figured I could cut out the cup of coffee and Wordle in bed part of my wake up routine and phone my workout in/move yoga to nap time. At 6:30, Ben and Minnie were still sleeping, so I tiptoed out of the room and took a quick walk. I broke up fights between the other kids, jumped on the elliptical, listened to the sounds of Ben and Minnie stirring above me, etc.

By 7:30, Harry and Jack were almost out the door; I was adequately exercised but under-caffeinated; the three youngest kids had breakfast, and Ben was ready to go. I went into our room to say good morning to Minnie (she eats breakfast every day in Ben’s bed), and she looked at me with big serious eyes and said, MAMA. YOU TAKE CARE A ME TODAY PUH-WEASE?

I felt terrible! She took an off-hand, middle-of-the-night comment SO SERIOUSLY, the poor baby.

But, I mean. At least she went to sleep?

(Literally would never let her watch Super Why and eat yogurt in my bed)

(We made cookies right away)


  1. Oh toddlers! That is a rough night of sleep, though. I'm impressed she remembered what you said! I don't think our toddler would but he's younger and not as verbal as Minnie is! I do love the mispronunciations, though. When Will says kitty it sounds like 'titty'. Lol.

  2. Awwww! This whole story just got me in the feels. Those WAY too early morning wake ups are SO HARD. And I laughed at your inability to make good decisions in the middle of the night. I am the exact same. My husband will ask me why I did something the night before (usually allowed our child to sleep in our bed, which means no sleep for me), and I will be baffled. It just seems impossible to think in the middle of the night!

    My kiddo used to call snacks "HNacks" and I miss it so much!

    1. hahaha-- no good decision in the middle of the night

  3. Man, it's a good thing I don't have children because I would not be able to prevent myself from answering seriously to a toddler's serious question: No, I've decided that you should try to take care of yourself today. I'm going to just leave you here alone to figure it out.

    No worries. No toddler has actually been harmed in my presence.*

    *This is a lie. My nephew fell once from across the room and all three adults raced over to get him, but we weren't fast enough and he did get a bump on the head.

  4. Anonymous5:08 PM

    So do you and your husband have separate beds in same room a la I Love Lucy? Assuming it's because of snoring and/or tossing and turning? If so, I think that is genius and am very jealous that you have a bedroom big enough for that to be possible!

  5. Oh, Minnie! That comment is so heart-wrenching, but don't feel too bad. I had a friend who, when her son was a toddler and kept waking her up at night, became so desperate and sleep-deprived that she told him if he didn't let her sleep she was going to die an early death! You can bet she regretted that the next day.
    Toddlers are just hard. But somehow, in spite of all our mistakes they grow up just fine. I hope you're getting more sleep now!

  6. I would constantly be asking, "why" if I had a toddler. Why the sudden appetite? Why the sudden middle of the night wakings? Are they related? Is it something I'm doing wrong? What has changed? (Can you tell I'm a researcher? LOL)