We never see them anymore. They never call. They never write.
They just stomp.
OH GOD WITH THE STOMPING!
And the THUDS! The glass rattling THUDS! Why can they not step gingerly out of bed? They hardly weigh anything. Well, Patrick does. But Gus? So spry! WHY? Why do they have to launch themselves UP into the air and DOWN onto the floor, permanently rearranging the molecular structure of our home—all in the name of “we’re justplaying, GOSH MOMMY.”
So, the relocation will require some adjustments in my medication. Namely, I will have to start taking some. Do you know which one’s the drug that makes you not scream in horror every time your child hops out of bed to get a book?
Thudnil? Side effects may include headaches, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, diarrhea, heart palpitations, sweaty palms, dirty toenails, gout, gonorrhea, excessive gas, bloating, chocolate cravings, gender confusion and delusions of being Elvis. Reported side effects have been mild to moderate to severe requiring long-term hospitalization. Ask your physician or healthcare practitioner whether Thudnil is right for you.
“Since I’ve started taking Thudnil, I no longer cringe when the ceiling shakes and paint chips sprinkle down into my lunch. Pass the peanut butter and banana sandwiches.”
On top of the thuds, there’s one other issue that the move has exacerbated. GUS. The child is five and a half years old, and he’s STILL not sleeping through the night. He used to come in to our room once a night, but since he’s been upstairs, it’s been two or three times a night, saying he’s thirsty, or lonely, or scared. Of the monsters. Of having another nightmare. Of being by himself. And he’s not even byhimself, because Patrick IS RIGHT THERE SLEEPING LIKE A PASTRY.
“He’s just a little kid,” Gus says. “Of course he sleeps.”
I see. Patrick has yet to experience the eternal darkness of the soul that plagues you world-weary kindergartners.
I know I should be more sympathetic. I should figure out why he can’t sleep. I should strive to understand what is on his mind and comforthim. But it’s hard with the voices in my head screaming HE’S BACK! THAT SELFISH LITTLE BASTARD IS BACK! YOU WILL NEVER SLEEP THROUGH THE NIGHT AS LONG AS YOU BOTH SHALL LIVE!
So I’m tired. And when I’m tired, I’m mean. And when I’m mean, I shush and bark threats. And when I shush and bark threats, I stress my kid out, and when he’s stressed out, he can’t sleep and neither can I.
Which brings me here. To my new downstairs office, at 4:30 in the morning, in the room where the boys’ bedroom used to be.