Monday, October 16

The Kiddie Never Sleeps

Somehow, none of my kids were ever big into taking naps.

It’s not surprising considering that before I became ancient, I too could never sleep in the daytime. I vividly recall, (eeringly as if it was yesterday) naptime in my kindergarten days and how all my peers would doze off into la-la land while I would toss and turn this way and that and count the pitted holes in the ceiling tiles.
It was pure torture.
Because of all my twitching I was never zoyche to be the ‘wake up fairy’ and wake all the children up with the special wand designated for such a purpose.

The problem with not taking a nap in the middle of the day means that most likely, the child in question will not be able to stay awake into the evening.
Umm, not necessarily.

My youngest child, my 4 year old, Cucumber, follows the pattern of the children who preceded her. A perfect example stands out of her MO this Simchas Torah. My parents and my favourite Uncle came to spend the second days of Sukkos with us in sunny London.

My mother begged me not to take Cucumber to Motzai Shabbos Hakafos, saying that Cucumber was so exhausted that she couldn’t see properly. She takeh looked as sleep deprived as a junior doctor and in as good of a mood. Ah, but I knew my child and shlepped her with me anyway.

As soon as the time rolled around for her normal bedtime, she flourished. Her pallid cheeks suddenly sprouted rosy colour. The dark circles under her eyes rapidly gave way to sparkling eyes. Her metamorphosis was nothing short of miraculous!

Yes, she had reached her ‘second wind’. She was in her element, gathering all shapes and sizes of sweets while running up and down the stairs and giggling with her little friends. But the time had come when I had to go home to make sure everything was ready for that evenings meal, so I asked Cucumber if she wanted to go home with me, she looked at me with her eyes slightly dilated from her sugar high and said, “I’ll go home with Daddy, hello!”

(Oh, by the way, Cucumber ends all of her sentences with ‘hello!’ as if you’re supposed to know what she says, before she says it. That way whenever she speaks she’s just stating the obvious:
“Mum, I need a spoon, hello!”
“That dress itches me, hello!”
“I already ate breakfast, hello!”)

So she came home with her Daddy; bouncing in, still raring to go, at 11:00 at night.

Every evening when the time comes for her to go to sleep, she becomes cuter than any child could hope to be. She brings every song and every dance in her repertoire out for my viewing pleasure. She insists on being read a book and then proceeds to weigh the books in her hands to see which one is the heaviest. (Knowing this, I only buy books with about three words per page.)
She then needs; a drink, the bathroom, to tell something to one of her siblings, to do her homework (wha?) anything, but go to sleep.

Then the worst part is, she goes into a deep-rhythm breathing state where you think she is fast asleep. So you move to leave her bedside, and she sits up as suddenly as the villain in an old horror flick that you think has been killed. And my reaction is quite similar, because I always jump from shock.

I do the whole, ‘winding down’ thing, only soft lighting, no voices above a whisper, relaxing bath time etc… but it never works. She seems to be as wound up as a politician awaiting the limelight. I think she thinks she’s missing out on something if she sleeps. That’s the only explanation I can think of because it also accounts for the fact that she wakes up at the crack of dawn, regardless of what time she goes to sleep.

Who knows, I might even change her name to ‘Caffeine’.

But then, when I look at her long eyelashes at long last resting on her cherubic cheeks and her gorgeous little form finally in the deepest of sleep, I think,
‘Now what was all that fuss about, hello?’

35 Comments:

At 11:33 AM, Blogger Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Who knows, I might even change her name to ‘Caffeine’.

Or perhaps, Insomnia ;-)

Just last night, my youngest decided that she would not go to sleep at all. 8:30 passes...9:00...9:30...every 15 minutes I try putting her in her crib and she SHRIEKS till I pick her up. Doesn't she know she's a youngest, and know we can't go through all this shtick with her?!

Finally, after not letting me get anything done around the house, she decided at 10:00 that I can place her in her crib...and she smiles and drinks her bottle and goes to sleep.

Leaving me exhausted...with no strength to do anything else.

Of course, going to bed late didn't stop her from waking up at 6:00 AM today.

Groan.

 
At 11:43 AM, Blogger kishmech said...

hehe.....hey just noticed you have a piccie link on the side! well done! x

 
At 12:52 PM, Blogger ~ Sarah ~ said...

what a bundle of energy, that little one! maybe you need more caffeine!

sounds like she takes after her mum though ;)

 
At 2:00 PM, Blogger socialworker/frustrated mom said...

Funny just like mine. No nap yet full of energy till the last drop.

 
At 3:01 PM, Blogger Scraps said...

There were three little girls at my shul like that this year (two of them twins), and they were soooo cute! They danced and danced and had more energy than practically anyone there. But it probably wasn't as much fun for their parents. :-P

 
At 4:04 PM, Blogger kasamba said...

Jameel;
Now THAT's a good name for her!

Groan is right!!!!

Kish:
Don't be too impressed- I gave them my password!

Sarah:
LOL! Too right on both counts!!!

Socialworker:
Till the last drop- like coffee!!!!

Scraps:
lol! It's just what comes up must come down!!!

 
At 8:29 PM, Blogger N.B. Goldstein said...

Hah! My first daughter (3 yrs) has never really taken long naps, and my youngest daughter (9 months) only cat naps. The funny thing is, both are almost always perfect angels at late night events, such as Shabbos dinners. Everyone remarks at how well behaved they are - no fussing or anything. I really have no explanation for it. They just don't need sleep.

I usually pass out before they do. Great post!

 
At 10:23 PM, Blogger Mia said...

Fantastic post! my little sister was the same until she got 16. Never wanted to miss out on anything, always full of energy. All of the sudden this changed and she was always first to sleep....

I like the name cucumber :) don´t change it :D

 
At 10:37 PM, Blogger MUST Gum Addict said...

I guess I have an Angel.

My 3.5 year old will walk up to me and ask me to please put her to bed. Sure, there are some days when she knows something exciting is going down around the house and she'll find ways to be at her best behavior and quietly play with her toys trying not to attract too much attention, but in general, getting her ready for bed is one of the joys I cherish.

Although it's pretty standard that 30 seconds after I leave her room, I begin to hear that all-familiar chant: "Can I PLEASE have a drink of water?"

Funny how they always say please when they know they're "out of bounds"...

 
At 11:57 PM, Blogger jemima3 said...

How many kids do you have and you STILL don't know it's a complete myth that kids needs sleep. oh and count yourself really lucky that she sleeps in her own bed and not yours! (how can I keep on getting it so wrong time after time?)

 
At 12:44 AM, Blogger cruisin-mom said...

I have to admit, I'm partial to caffeine, so a name change is okay by me. Uh, by they kasamba, great post, HELLLLLOOOOO!!!

 
At 1:00 AM, Blogger BarbaraFromCalifornia said...

lol... She will not have her name ever changed to DULL!

Well, at least I can see that you have a good life, and there is not a dull moment.

Enjoy the children while they are young. Each stage presents its own challenges.

 
At 1:57 AM, Blogger Sara with NO H said...

Man I hope I have kids like Must gums. Of course since I was the little terror running around the house, (I ran into a wall as a child wearing a sheet over my head pretending I was a ghost of course after my mommy told me to cut it out and had to get stitches. I unrolled almost every thing of toilet paper in everyones house thinking I was a mummy...over and over and over again)my mother tells me to this day she hopes I have at least 5 kids just like I was growing up. G^d help me.

 
At 9:51 AM, Blogger Pragmatician said...

How cute is that and how ingenious to know exactly what to do to push sleeptime to much (too) later.

 
At 2:12 PM, Blogger Claire said...

Loved this post - I'm glad I found your blog!

Cxx

 
At 6:48 PM, Blogger BagelUndertheCouch said...

funny how things change. i find myself nodding off during ''the little mermaid.'' right in the middle of ''kiss the girl.'' i'm so old.

 
At 10:01 PM, Blogger David_on_the_Lake said...

lol...my kid is the same way..
Thank goodness only one.

He's always awake...I come home from shul 11pm his face is at the window..I get up at 5:30 he's reading a book....

 
At 5:12 AM, Blogger Ezzie said...

LOL - Ah, Kasamba... what would we do without you? :)

Thankfully, Elianna's good, quiet, and easy. She generally goes right to sleep. I don't know what we'd do either, but it's always all worth it. :)

 
At 4:18 PM, Blogger Nemo said...

As long as you don't have to call her 'Speed,' you know you've succeeded as a mother.

 
At 5:07 PM, Blogger Lakewood Venter said...

good post

 
At 1:55 AM, Blogger pint-sized said...

I dunno, 'Speed' is quite a cool name! I knew someone called Speed. lovely girl, she was, very energetic, always telling funny stories about her tripping. I always thought it was odd, she seemed to tell stories about tripping all the time, no bumps though...Very resilient young girl, oh yes...

 
At 1:53 PM, Blogger kasamba said...

Sara with no H:
May you have kids that go to sleep nicely, but then again, if they take after you...

Prag:
You're right, she's very creative!

Claire:
Why, thanks, I'm gald you found it too- welcome!

Bagel Under couch:
You make me feel like a dinasaur!

David:
See comment to Nb Glodstein!

Ezzie:
ENJOY HER!!!!

Nemo:
LOL!! You're right!

LV: Ta!

Pint-sized:
Very interesting but hopefully not for my kid!

 
At 1:54 PM, Blogger kasamba said...

Nb Goldstein:
they say the smartest kids are the ones that need the least sleep! YAY!

Mia:
Why, thank you!
I'll just have to wait until she's a teenager!

Must:
You are so lucky ! Enjoy her- she sounds delicious!

Jemima:
Ok, so I'm slow on the uptake- join the club!

Crusin:
LOL! thanks so much, hello!

Barbara:
LOL! You are so right- on all counts!

 
At 3:08 PM, Blogger Bonnie B said...

You are the best writer on the Web. I read this and see little snippits of my daughter and feel truckloads of love.

 
At 3:40 PM, Blogger Freedom TelAviv said...

CHANGE HER NAME TO EVERYREADY

 
At 12:18 AM, Blogger mindless cravings said...

i pictured the whole scene so well, do some people never grow out of it?

 
At 6:02 AM, Blogger the only way i know said...

Hey
blogworlds waking up again
so many fab comments!!!!!
how bout calling her banana?
lol

 
At 11:28 AM, Blogger kasamba said...

Bonnie:
You cna't even know just how much that compliment means to me!!!
Thank you from the bottom of my heart!

Manynames:
LOL!

Mindless cravings:
My oldest sleeps all the time- I guess there's hope!

Towik:
LOL!
Now THAT was the best suggestion made!!!!

 
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