May 17, 2005

Unsustainable Architecture

You, punkling, are the only one who's getting any sleep.

Because of my status as Primary Breadwinner of the Peeny-Deeny household, I have been delegated a bed in the spare room. This is theoretically devoid of distractions and therefore would in most cases enable me to get at least enough sleep between your 11pm bath and your 6am feed to function in a semi-literate manner at work.

Of course, that's not the way you want to do things.

For your ENTIRE LIFE, you say, you have got to sleep with your dad, and you didn't see why last night should be any different. So.

At 2am, in tears, your mother opened the door to the room in which I lay sleeping, blissfully unaware of the carnage with which she had been presented. I could tell what was wrong even before she told me, and I reached out for you. You settled briefly on my chest and we lay back down, but then you snuffled and struck out, your whole body tensing, limbs flailing. You cried like that, with agonising wails tearing through your tiny frame, for a good five minutes. Your mum collapsed beside me, apparently defeated, thinking that her tactic had failed and that she was doomed to another three hours of you refusing to sleep.

I began searching for a reason for your cries, trying to figure out what was wrong, but to no avail. You were full, your nappy was clean, and the temperature was ok. We had just about made the decision to either strap you in the car or call the Maternal / Child Health Care Line (13 22 29).

But then you stopped. Too tired, it seemed, to go on.

You collapsed against my chest and fell, as you do, immediately into a deep sleep. Too scared to move for fear of waking you up again, I suggested to your mum that she go back to our bed and get some rest, and that I would come in and wake her up when you raised your head for a feed.

Then I held you. All night. And you slept in my arms.

At about 3:30 I heard the dogs in the living room eating something they shouldn't have been, but I didn't dare yell at them for fear of disturbing you. At about 5 I descended into a fitful doze, still holding you, desperate to avoid waking you up. We stayed like that until I got up for work at 7:15.

You slept last night, Abraham William Peeny-Deeny, longer than you have ever slept in your life.

Your mum got some much needed rest.

But please, please, please, learn to sleep somewhere other than on my chest?

Love you.

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