This, when the goal is to slide into the evening with your thoughts and a glass of wine, your children at last asleep. Let’s be honest, looking forward to these moments is what keeps you going some days.
So when one of your children refuses to cooperate and instead keeps getting out of bed after lights out and you see no discernible reason other than he quite possibly does not want you to have alone time, you will sigh heavily and say “Alright, then. Come here. Sit on the couch with me.”
The truth is you are just too tired to keep walking him back to bed.
You ask him, of course you do: “John, what is it? Why can’t you sleep?” You ask him, knowing that it’s futile, knowing that answering requires too much and tools he does not have. And then you spot your laptop. You open a blank word doc and you type:
John, why are you sad? Because… ?
You don’t expect an answer, you don’t expect much, which is why when he leans forward you still don’t realize.
a take to bed
“Take you back to bed?” You tell him you still don’t understand. You try again.
WHY is John sad? no sadOkay. Is something bothering John? Yes or no? yes
And you tell him you want to help, can he please tell you more, can he type more?
neat mom sat on bedsleep mom sad wake up momback ward school
What does it mean? Backward school? Go back to school? And he continues:
dad grandma house traindad number 012345dad grow planthome momdinnermovie popcornbath timebed timebrekfestdad no hidad air updad chikfil athe muppet show season 3sesame street surprise watchmoo bow elmo puppetfair boathot air balloonlunchfair boat homedinner movie bedback to schoollost home ant jtgo homenosewatch to baby da vincijelly fish
This. All of this. You need to de-code and you need to alert the press. This is the longest conversation you’ve ever had.
The day you discovered Sesame Street’s “Divorce: Little Children, Big Challenges” downloaded on his ipad without any help you knew that he was taking it all in and processing. And today you see, god how you see, just how much he has to say.