A Good Night’s Sleep

Abby’s been having sleep trouble. It started about two months ago when she woke up in the middle of the night crying and asking about monsters. She didn’t seem scared, just upset. She crawled into my bed and I mumbled something about “monster alarms.” We have Monster Alarms that make a really loud noise and scare off monsters if they come to close to the house. If you don’t hear the sound, there are no monsters. I created it around 3 o’clock in the morning and quickly regretted it.

The next night, Abby asked me about the Monster Alarms. I assured her that they work. Once again she woke up crying in the middle of the night. She curled up in bed with me. It took a few minutes but she calmed down and went back to sleep. This went on for a couple of weeks, just a few nights a week. Then it slowly changed to her not falling asleep unless I was in the room with her. Then it became she wouldn’t sleep unless I was there and she was in my bed.

It’s been about two months, and, last night, Abby fell asleep in her bed by herself. She was snuggled up with me and poking me in the same sore spot over and over. I asked her to stop multiple times and then gave her the warning that if she didn’t stop, we were going to go to bed. She didn’t stop, and I walked to the bedroom. She’s following me crying and screaming. She gets mad and throws a stuffed bear at me, and I told her if she wanted to talk she could be quiet and use words.

It took a little while, but she calmed down and curled up with me. She picked out two books to read. In one of them, the mommy tucks the baby in and kisses him. She asked me if I could do that. I told her that I couldn’t because she wouldn’t sleep in her bed. We moved on to the second book and cuddled for a minute. Then she got up and moved to her bed. I asked if she wanted me to tuck her in and she said, “No, I got it.” She tucked her bear in and covered herself up.

After about five minutes I said, “I’m going to get up, turn out the lights, and go write on my computer.” I walked over to her, gave her a couple of kisses, told her to yell if she needed something, turned out the light, and then left the room.

I made it halfway through the house when she yelled for me. I asked her what was wrong. “You forgot to hug me.” I apologized, gave her a hug and kiss, told her goodnight, and left again. I didn’t hear another word out of her.

She slept the entire night in her bed. She didn’t wake up crying. She didn’t wake up. She definitely didn’t climb into my bed. I hope tonight is the same minus the meltdown.

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