Quick, someone give me a copy of my last post so I can recall the reasons I had for saying children are a blessing (I told you that come Monday I would need to be reminded). Z didn’t sleep last night and as we all know, if our darling offspring don’t sleep, neither do we.
He was very tired and actually asked to go to bed. As we settled down to watch TV after the other two had gone to sleep we heard a loud thud and hubby went upstairs to find Z fast asleep on the floor after falling out of bed. Ten minutes after hubby put him back he was up again to go to the toilet…and so it went on until eventually he got upset and asked to come downstairs.
As he’s usually a good sleeper and this was out of character we let him for a few minutes and then put him back in his own bed. We thought we’d cracked it…
Until 12.30am when he got up saying he needed the loo again. After half an hour of messing and worry that he may wake up his brothers we relented and did some bed hopping with Z in bed with me and hubby in his bed.
Initially I was concerned that he may be poorly but as I checked for a temperature I realised I needn’t have worried; the triumphant look on his face at being allowed to sleep in our bed has only ever been rivalled by Olympic gold medallists.
And so it was with a sense of foreboding that I settled into bed with Z in his favourite nose-to-nose position; because whilst I normally love nothing better than breathing in his sweet still-baby smell, after thirty minutes of lying like this I found that my arms and legs felt surplus to requirements and I could not get into a position that didn’t result in paralysing numbness followed by shooting pins and needles.
Z also insisted on wrapping one arm tightly around my neck so I had not only lost all feeling in my limbs, I also had a crick in my neck because I couldn’t put my head down on the pillow properly.
Once he fell asleep I slowly extracted myself and turned onto my side, thinking this would be more comfortable…and instantly regretted it because the space I had been occupying quickly became filled by my small son as though he was more liquid than flesh and bones, flowing into every available nook and cranny until I was balanced on three inches of mattress.
It was at this point that I realised I needed a wee (ironic after all the time I had spent in the bathroom with Z over the last two hours) but didn’t dare move, knowing that I would lose my claim on the bed entirely once I vacated it, so I lay awake for some time, my son snoozing peacefully with his head nestling in my shoulder blades and his feet burrowing into my lower back until I could stand the pain in my bladder no longer.
I eased my aching body off the bed and even before I had reached the door my toddler, stretching luxuriously like a cat, came to rest diagonally with his head on my pillows and his feet on the cool side where my husband should have been. As I went to relieve myself my husband heard me (surprisingly he couldn’t get his 6′ 2″ frame comfortable under a Mickey Mouse duvet on a children’s three-quarter length bottom bunk) so I told him to come and look at Z.
Thinking we were having a ‘look at our very own miracle of nature’ moment rather than a ‘look what a little shit we’ve created’ moment he breathed, ‘Ah, bless.’ I glared at him. ‘No, NOT ‘ah bless’.' I snapped. Realising he had misread the mood hubby wisely said nothing and moved Z over to the other side of the bed.
With space on the mattress once more (I was counting my blessings even though I had only a corner of the duvet and half a pillow) I got back into bed…but my relief was to be short-lived. The next two hours were spent intermittently in the toilet (where he didn’t actually do anything) and digging a Mickey Mouse teddy out from under my arm, knees from out of my ribs, hands out from under my pillows and feet out of my lady bits.
At 4am, finally at the point of drifting off to blissful sleep, I heard Z get up, open the door to his bedroom and say indignantly to my husband, ‘My bed, Daddy!’ as though forced into our bed under duress.