bedtime charades

I’m pretty sure I scared the pants off my son tonight.

I’m completely over this whole summer bedtime thing.

Since the sun is like the four o’clock in the afternoon sun at eight o’clock in the evening, my kids are having a hard time getting their circadian rhythms to obey what mama says.

Here’s the thing: I NEED bedtime. I NEED it so desperately I start to feel surges of energy as it gets closer in the evening because I know that soon, yes, so very soon, I can have some time for just me.

No one will need me (OK, my husband but he’s an adult. It’s different.) I don’t have to talk to anyone about why we put the lid up on the toilet seat when we potty. I don’t have to make snacks and meals and unload the dishwasher and all that other stuff that makes up a day and needs to be done.

Because here’s the other thing: caring for others is incredibly exhausting.

Yes, it’s a gift I’m able to be home with them. I do feel incredibly blessed. I have been both a full-time working mom and a stay-at-home mom and let me tell you, girls.

There’s no debate. Both sides are hard. But we can do it because we’re big girls.

So since I am currently a stay-at-home-mom who is also attempting to write at least part time (bah!) night time is my right/write time.

I love me some bedtime.

Glennon Melton, author of Carry On, Warrior: Thoughts on Life Unarmed and a blog called Momastery, calls bedtime the “victory lap.” . She also wrote a fabulous post comparing putting her children to bed to playing a game of Whack-a-Mole. It’s a hilarious must-read.

And I find it funny (well, sort of) because my once very good sleepers are now really high-maintenance at bedtime.

We need water. Band-Aids. Cough medicine.

We get scared. One of the boys drops a bomb and it smells.

We could go on here but I think you’re picking up what I’m throwing down.

They’re stalling, for crying out loud, and I don’t have time for that when I NEED my time.

Because if mama doesn’t get her right/write time?

Ain’t nobody happy.

So since the boys had a friend sleep over tonight, I reached deep into my grace reserves and allowed them to stay up a bit later, gnosh on some popcorn and watch The Pirates Who Don’t Do Anything.

Until 9:30. Then I pulled the plug.

And then the Whack-a-Mole started.

Samuel needed a Kleenex. Then a drink. Then, finally, he wanted to turn his light on so he could read even though his brother and our overnight guest were both ready to sleep.

I can’t tell you what overtook my soul at that last request but I’m shocked my head didn’t completely spin around my neck.

Through clenched teeth and wearing a look I know was frightening, I said, “It. Is. 9:30. You. Are. Not. Turning. On. The. Light.”

Then for good measure, I added, “Dear.” That always softens the psychotic blow, right?

Face white, expression a little unsure of what briefly overtook his mother, he smartly didn’t say another word about it and just asked for his flashlight.

And you’ll be glad to know my head remained in-place. I didn’t throw-up all over myself or require an exorcism.

We all made it.

Just barely.

So the moral of the story?

Ain’t nobody got time for bedtime charades.

Especially mom.