She Comes For Us In The Night

So we’ve been having this sleep problem at our house over the past six months.  At some point in the middle of the night, Savanna pads into our room and appears at my side of the bed.  She’s like a fuzzy little ghost-I never hear her coming into our room-and she rubs my arm and waits until I pull her into the bed, where she sleeps between Mike an I until morning.  The fact that she  “packs up” before leaving her room because she arrives with her pillow, blanket, and a stuffed animal in hand is something that I find hilarious. She knows how to time her arrival meticulously well, right around the time I enter the deepest sleep ever slept.  So I just toss her over at some point in the night-sometimes I remember it and sometimes I don’t-and then the crazy part happens:  she turns into a giant.  

I’m not sure how it happens, but her little body ends up in 84 different places at once, including my face.  Her arms are all over the place and at the same time, it seems that they’re all over Mike, too.  How does that happen?  She’s only 4 feet tall, and yet she seems to occupy the entire king size bed.  How many arms does she have in the middle of the night?  Is she actually upside down or sideways?  Last night, the kid literally slapped me in the face while I was in the deepest sleep.  I didn’t really care, but I do wonder  how kids hurl their bodies around during sleep without waking up.  Sometimes, it’s Mike who wakes me up-he really doesn’t appreciate the face slap move.  I hear something like this:  OW, SAVANNA, MOVE OVER!  CAN YOU SCOOT OVER? And guess what I do whenever she moves in on my side?  I go get in her bed.  At least I can get some sleep there without getting slapped in the nose!

Believe me, we used to have the most healthy sleep habits around here.  Bedtime routine was in place, kid slept through the night, and she didn’t come out of her bed once put to bed.  This all started out innocently enough when we were traveling.  Savanna would end up in our bed, which was fine, but that kind of leaked into our every day life.  Then she came into our room at home whenever she woke up at night and got scared.  That turned into a nightly habit, and now I expect my nightly visit sometime between the hours of 11PM and 3AM.  Occasionally, she takes a long nap and then waits us out.  The kid waits and listens for us to go to sleep and then creeps into our room…..

So I have no idea what to do about this-maybe it’s a developmental phase she’s going through right now.  Healthy sleep is so important for kids cognitive abilities, immune systems, and overall health.  What’s a mom to do?  So far, I’ve tried incentives, bribes, and encouragement,and none of it works.  I’m not going to lock the door and leave her out there feeling terrified.  Finally, I’ve just given up.  Tossed in the towel.  I figure it’ll pass in time, and that this is one of those things we probably worry too much about when it doesn’t really matter in the long run.  Soon enough, she won’t want much to do with us and we’ll miss these days, right?

At the end of the day, do any of us know what we’re doing?  Even if a parenting book were written, it couldn’t include half the stuff we deal with on a daily basis.  Like how to talk a kid out of wearing the same outfit every single day.  Or how to explain the importance of brushing hair before going to school.  I find myself just making it up as I go along and hoping for the best.  After all, we have far less influence on our kids than we think we do.  Research has shown that most of the things we think matter (neighborhood, school choice, money, working parents, day care, etc.) have very little effect in the long run.  My thought is this:  the best we can do is love our kids and have the most fun possible.  One day, it’ll be over and we’ll be offering this same advice to our own kids with kids (I hope!).

That’s all for now, friends.  Wow, Fort Lauderdale real estate seems to be holding value instead of losing it these days.  It’s very interesting to watch that happen, and I wonder if we’ll see any real estate market improvements in 2012.  I hope we will-stay tuned for more on this topic, as we women need to be economically informed these days.  Ta ta for now!


  1. Mike Abel says:

    I love this post! We live in Boca, and Homes for sale in Boca Raton are so widely available that I think we’ll see a huge increase in residents here over the next five years. Great information!