Herald Journal Columns
July 22, 2002

The fly when you're sleeping


You are sleeping soundly and daybreak is nearing. It's a rare Saturday morning - no work, no plans but to hang out at home and relax - and out of nowhere . . . attack!

It lands on your arm and you wiggle away from it. The covers go over your head, but you left the tip of your ear exposed. This is where it lands, making that annoying noise right there in your ear.

The covers come up higher and you bury yourself under them until there is no more oxygen. But the minute you come up for air, it is ready to strike again.

What am I writing about? A fly? Nope, a two-year-old.

This is how I've been feeling lately with every opportunity to sleep in, which is a very rare treat to begin with. I have a two-year-old little boy who feels that since he is up and ready to start the day, everyone else should be too.

Most days either start with Superbaby (a.k.a. Cameron) jumping up in the air and landing right on top of me or my husband, or with pokes in the eye and whining for juice that could make anyone want to sleep in the bathtub with the door locked.

Argh! Two-year-olds are so very challenging. I'm sure that must be why God made them so cute. Why else would we actually keep them?

There are the mothers/grandmothers of the world that feel a need to remind us that that is our punishment for being a challenging two year old once ourselves. What about the people who don't have children? Who pays them back?

Cameron is my second child. My first child, Mitch, was a very easy toddler. I didn't appreciate that nearly as much then as I do now.

I remember saying that I thought the terrible twos was just a myth. Mitch didn't throw temper tantrums. Honestly. I mistakenly thought that all the complaints I heard from friends and relatives about their own little gems of two-year-old children were exaggerations.

My little Cameron, on the other hand, has been known to throw himself down on the floor and scream at the top of his lungs. He did this just last week at the post office because I pulled him out of one of the unlocked mail lockers reserved for larger packages. The door on the locker was fully closed, although not locked, while my sweet little boy was curled up in there as happy as can be.

That little trick was taught to him by Dad at the mall, when they were killing time while I shopped in a ladies store. Cam would squeeze into the locker and jump out at my husband and oldest son.

I wondered how many people thought that he looked a little too comfortable in that locker to be considered healthy. There were many giggles from people walking by, and one man even stopped to watch, with a big smile on his face.

I had to wonder if the man was remembering his own children when they were young. If he was, he certainly must have been remembering them at any age other than two.

As the weekend approaches, I know that there will be no sleeping in. Cameron won't allow that. But along with the jumping and the pokes in the eye, there are also the sweet mornings when he askes me "How yous sweep, mommmyyy?"

And I also know that someday I will miss this Saturday morning quality time. Someday, when my sons have blue spiked hair and want to be dropped off a block from school, I will look back and wish that I could have it all back again.

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