Larry is a very occasional snorer. If his allergies are flaring up, or he has a bad cold, or a bad dream (as was the case last night) he’ll rattle his nose cage, but the rest of the time he’s a pretty gentle breather. It’s a good thing, too, because the sound of someone merely existing next to me is sometimes more than I can take.
Me: Shhhhhh! God. Have some consideration.
A faucet dripping, or the dishwasher humming, or a clock TICK … TICK … TICKing … will send me lunging for my purple lady earplugs faster than you can say Oh my GOD! You wear earplugs? At night? And you’re a mother? Aren’t you concerned about not hearing the sound of your babies needing you?
People. I have been hearing nothing but the sound of my children needing me for the past five and a half years. If you think a pair of purple earplugs is going to get between their needs and my raggedy ass eardrums, think again.
Last night? Gus came into our room three times, and it was only after Larry got up to bring him back to his room and the dog decided that was his golden opportunity to move in for a deep tongue kiss that I noticed anything was amiss. Thank you, purple earplugs! NO thank you, Sean. I don’t like you “in that way.”
Here’s the thing. I have never been the sort of person who can wake up, comfort a child, and fall right back to sleep. When something—-anything-—wakes me up in the middle of the night, my brain will process and file the disturbance in one of two ways: either SOMEONE IS DYING or SOMEONE IS TRYING TO KILL YOU. There is no “relax, the dog just wants to get jiggy with your face” folder in my psyche.
So, every time I’m awakened against my will, my mind races, my heart beats out of my chest, and it is thirty minutes MIN-I-MUM before I can settle myself down enough to even consider sleep. And once I do, I will no doubt dream that my car’s steering column is out of alignment and I can only make left turns, which is a problem because the mechanic shop is over there ON THE RIGHT and Christopher Reeve is waiting back at the house (which is not my house but my gay friend from high school who didn’t know he was gay’s house) for me to bring him a sandwich. And as you know Christopher Reeve is PARALYZED. (And also dead. Though not in my dream.) BUT I DIGRESS.
Larry is the kind of person (a.k.a. A Man) who can fall asleep immediately under any circumstances. And I can’t. So sometimes? I wear earplugs to take the edge off. And my husband deals with the kids.
IMAGINE! Look at the little lady getting all “modern” and stuff! Is this so hard to believe? Why, when I confess about my earplugs do I feel like I’m in an Earplugs Anonymous meeting?
"Hi, my name is Amanda and I am a person who likes to experience the ECSTASY of rapid eye movement once or twice a year."
Single moms and dads, my hat is seriously off to you for delivering 24/7 service. You are made of magic. But while I have a sidekick, I’m going to tap into his superpowers now and then. Ya hear?