Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Going out...of my mind

Last week Michael and I got down to business getting Isaiah on a regular schedule. We've never really felt the need for putting him on a nap schedule before, and I've always let it be a rather organic agenda. As long as he continued to get enough sleep throughout the day and night, I was content to let him take his two or three naps whenever he needed them, and get to bed whenever he was tired. Lately, though, I realized that I would need to be a little more deliberate about the whole thing, because he was beginning to get to bed at erratic times, and he wasn't sleeping for long enough stretches during the night. So, I figured I would try to have him wake up around eight or eight-thirty (which he always does anyway,) take his morning nap around ten-thirty, his afternoon nap around three-thirty, and have him in bed by eight. What a nice plan on paper. What actually happened most days was a half-hour nap at ten, an hour nap at noon, another half hour nap at three, and a biiig long nap around five, which left him too refreshed to go to bed at eight.

I finally am starting to get it down, though, and apparently Isaiah still needs three smaller naps during the day instead of two long ones. Even though the nap times vary a bit from day to day, we are getting him to bed and waking him up at consistent times, which is the most important part to me.

We also tried going out on our first date without Isaiah this last week. Michael and I both wanted to see Pirates of the Caribbean, so I began pumping milk four or five days ahead of time and storing it for our big night out. Uncle Peter agreed to watch Isaiah, and we decided to go as early as we could so we could be back for his bedtime, if possible. We decided to go to the AMC inside the Mall of America because it was a short drive should we need to run back home for any emergency. Unfortunately, Uncle Peter couldn't get off work as soon as we had hoped, so we would only be able to make the 6:45 show. Then, when we got to the theater, we realized they had posted the time wrong in the paper and it was actually a 7:15 show. I had already called Peter in the car on the way to the theater, but I figured I should call him again to let him know of the later showing and make sure once more that Isaiah was fine. He was just fine, of course, but I was still very nervous.

The movie was great, but halfway through, I called Peter again to check in. Isaiah was still just fine, so I went back into the theater and watched the rest of the movie with enjoyment. When it was done, I made Michael call because I figured Peter probably thought I was already insane. Unfortunately, this time Isaiah was crying and had been unhappy for a half-hour or so. Although it had been smart to go to a theater that was a short drive from home, it had been less smart to park in a ramp that could only be accessed through a department store, which had closed for the night. So what do I do as a rational, sane human being? I begin sprinting through the Mall of America in my heels looking for an exit. I'm sure everyone I passed thought I had shoplifted and was trying to outrun security, such was the look of horror and guilt on my face. As I was running, knowing how strange I looked, a thought occurred to me: I am no longer an independent woman; I am attached and bound to Isaiah and completely under his control. We finally got to our car (it took so, so long to get there) and we raced home. The entire time, Michael reassured me that this would not permanently scar Isaiah, that he was only crying because he was tired, that Isaiah wasn't hurt, that Peter was doing a fine job. All I could think of, though, was that I was a terrible mother and an idiot for choosing such a long movie for our first night out.

Finally, we arrived at home. I raced out of the car in my bare feet (they were quite sore from running around the mall in heels,) and sprinted through our back door expecting to hear those heart-wrenching little sobs. Instead it was completely silent. I found Peter in the living room watching the news with Isaiah fast asleep on his lap. Peter smiled and said that Isaiah finally just tired himself out and fell asleep. I felt so relieved that he was no longer crying, yet so awful that Isaiah had to fall asleep uncomforted. While Michael and Peter chatted in the living room, I walked back to our bedroom, sat down on our bed, and burst into tears. I cried for a solid five minutes before Michael brought sweet little sleeping Isaiah in so I could snuggle with him in bed. He slept in my arms, and I smelled his soft head, and I knew that we were both fine.

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