Friday, December 12, 2014

Rise and Shine Buddy Boy

Each and every day we rise from our slumber. And each and every night we return home and, at varying hours, we return to our slumber.

In between, we make lives for ourselves. Our lives are different but we all share the cycle of sleep. We sleep. We wake. We sleep and we wake.

When you think about it like that, as little more than a routine inevitability, one could conclude this process would be easy.

After all, we have to do it every day right?
"Up and at 'em buddy!! Life awaits!"

But it’s not. Some people have difficulty falling asleep. Other people, like my son for example, have trouble waking up.

Granted, he only seems to have trouble waking up at certain times.

3 a.m.? No problem. He occasionally demonstrates that he’s perfectly capable of jumping up and announcing his presence to the world at that god awful hour.

Waking between 6-7 a.m.? That proposition is far from reliable.

In his 2.5 years on this planet the boy is revealing himself to be something of an occasional morning person.

Some days, he’s ready to hit the ground running. Others, there’s no rise and there’s little shine, unless you count the light reflecting off his angry, red cheeks.

It’s not that he’s immediately angry when he wakes. Mostly, he’s just a zombie. He says little, moves even less.

That last point is an issue when you’ve got two working parents who need to get out the door as soon as possible.

A kid who sits in front of breakfast and, instead of eating, stares blankly into the abyss for minutes at a time doesn’t facilitate getting to work on time. It’s a solemn, statuesque pose the boy cuts, though if done by a 40-year-old man, it’d be creepy.

Monday through Friday, we don’t indulge this behavior — we just don’t have time. But, on the weekend, we’ll let him have his time before snapping out of it.

Sometimes we can jar the boy out of his waking coma by prodding him to eat, which he sometimes does.

Other times, he slips into an inconsolable fit. It’s at this point, we frequently try to distract him. A stream of questions about his impending breakfast usually does the trick.

“You want apple juice, buddy?” I’ll ask. And he’ll reply by crying and rolling on the ground.

“I’ll take that as a ‘no.’”

“How about milk?” To which he’ll respond with yet more crying and even more rolling.  

“How about some peanut butter?” If it’s the right day, he’ll stop crying for a moment and say, “OK!”

It’s not always peanut butter and we don’t always get an “OK!” sometimes the string of questions just goes until we run out of food and drink to offer.


At that point, it’s over. The offers are gone. Mom and dad have made multiple attempts to satisfy him.

What happens next is almost purely a function of time. If we can, we’ll let him cry it out until he realizes he’s hungry. If we can’t, we’ll take a more aggressive tack, put him in his seat, set the food in front of him and tell him to eat.

Sensing the urgency and desperation of his parents, the boy almost always obliges us and eats and drinks. Though, it’s rarely the amount one would like to see go down that gullet.

It's yet another compromise and one of those moments when you simply have to concede that, you're raising a little person. And, when was the last time any of us "persons" wanted to do exactly what we're told?

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