To give you an accurate idea of what state my house is in, I’ll tell you that as I write this I can detect the smell of baby poop wafting around. I have neglected to throw out a dirty diaper and left it to warm in the summer sun on our dining room table. Yes, this is the dedication I have to the craft of writing. I knew it was now or never, so poop and its potent nostril attack strategy be damed. It is time to blog!

I’ve just put our son down to nap and it brought to mind a story for your enjoyment. It is an account on our recent battles with sleep and getting our son to stop disrespecting this, the most precious of slumber.

I’ve entitled this piece, “It was an experiment? It went awry?” and you’re about to see why.

Jonah’s ability to “sleep through the night” has been suspect from birth. He’s now almost eleven months old and he hasn’t so much completed this milestone as he has teased us with a few spans of time where he started acting like a grown up and did sleep fairly soundly from night to night. However, all these moments in time always came to an end. After he was three months old I was quick to blame teething for his spotty record but his teeth didn’t spring up until just a couple months ago. After his teeth were in and they sat upon his gums all pearly and perfectly white, it was the battle of taking the bottle away that kept us all from sleep. Yes, he was long past feeding throughout the night but I had a terrible habit of letting shireling go to bed with a bottle. The truth was by the time he was going to sleep, whether it was nap time or bed time, I was already at my wits end and I just wanted to stuff his cake hole. And, I knew a bottle would send him off to the land of nod better than anything else. Before his teeth were in I just didn’t see the harm in it – Jonah never fell asleep with it in his mouth anyway, and once he was asleep I removed the bottle from his reach. So, for a little while we slept again. But that was over quickly because like I said our little man had popped the teeth so that tactic had to go. It took some time because I am not the best at having endless patience as is well documented here in this blog by my own admission. However, we got there.

So, cut to a couple of weeks ago. Jonah would have his last bottle before bed and then he would gladly take his soother (Yes, he still has it, it has got to be one damn thing at a time, people.) and off he’d pop to sleep. Life was good. And, perhaps I stupidly thought that once “Oh, aren’t I not the luckiest sod?” and so upon hearing this, the universe says, “fuck, no” and decides to smite us.

One night, Jonah wakes up and is immediately writhing and screaming like a cat being skinned. After attempt after attempt to calm him, soothe him, check him, pacifier his ass, offer him a bottle of water, change him, everything short of shaking him quiet – there is Jeff and I in bed next to Satan’s crib. Hubby is huffing and puffing and I’m having lucid dreams about meat grinders going on sale. Yes, 99.9% of the time I would take thirty bullets to the head in order to save my kid, but there is always that one tenth of a percent … where it is three in the morning and your kid is screaming in the octave only a banshee could reach and you give in and think “If your dad doesn’t take you out. I will.” Maybe other parents don’t have the balls to say it but I do. And this was just one of those times.

I roll over to Hubby and I say almost on the verge of an ocean of tears, “What do we do?”

Jonah is standing at the side of his crib calling out for us, his voice raspy and he’s breathless – I’m telling you this night took years off my life. Jeff gets up, takes the bedding and pillows and stands at the door and says, “Goodnight Jonah, we love you. Come on, babe.” And beckons me to follow him out of the bedroom.

Jonah was restless and cried for another thirty minutes or so while Hubby and I found a way to share the couch comfortably (myself owning 65 percent of the couch and him only getting 35.) We all slept until the morning.

Unwilling and weaponless to fight another night with our son who is stronger willed than I could ever had imagined, Hubby and I spend the next week and a half sleeping on the couch, leaving Jonah to have jurisdiction over our one bedroom and can you guess what happened? Each night, Jo slept soundly from 730pm till 8 am the next day – one or two times he even snoozed straight through till 10 am. One night he woke and whined but it lasted less than three minutes before he was back to sleep.

It was an experiment and it went awry. Why? Because now Hubby and I live on the couch and our 11 month old has his own master suite. We tried once to go back and reclaim the territory but sure as shit my little shireling (now, deemed Orc from Mordor) stood in his crib wailing at two am. Turns out I gave birth to something as manipulative as I am. How the hell is that fair? I write this as a warning to other parents of nocturnal creatures. Don’t give up your bedrooms! Little bastards will take you up on it!

Needless to say, the search for a new home has shifted into high gear. I am putting an ad in the paper tomorrow that reads: Family in need of home with many bedrooms immediately. Parents of Fighting Uruk-hai need to sleep beside Mount Doom for no longer than necessary. Imminent death is probable. Contact us via Lost Seeing Stone. Much haste must be taken.