Last night I decided to treat myself to an early night. By 9.20 I was all tucked up in bed with HIGNFY livening up my bedroom TV and prepared for a lovely long night's sleep. What was I thinking?
Of course it began to pour torrentially, but I did manage to overcome the sound of the wind lashing the rain against the window to eventually fall asleep. That wasn't my problem.
My problem was that both of the boys seem to have an uncanny ability to know exactly what would be the worst and most inconvenient thing to do and then to do that with such skill that it's as though they have been practising for ages!
So, early night? Must be an opportunity for OB to decide that 3.30am is getting-up time then.
He's been struggling at bedtime for a few nights now. He clings onto me when I put him into his cot as though I'm abandoning him in the lion's den. When I leave the room, he's standing up, reaching out for me and crying hysterically.
Since he's outgrown his onesies and his growbags I've been putting him to bed just in his pyjamas which means that since the summer weather has deserted us, he gets cold in bed. He does have a lovely quilt and blanket but he doesn't know how to use them, so he lies at one end of the cot and they lie at the other. Usually I sneak in about an hour after he's gone to bed and cover him with the quilt but last night, drunk with desire for my own bed, I forgot :(
Consequently, he was wide awake at 3.30 and no amount of cuddling, soothing, rocking or reasoning could persuade him to settle down and get back in his cot to go to sleep. It took me until 5.30 to finally coax a snooze out of him and then he woke again at 6am all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed just as if he'd had a full and satisfying night's sleep! I have to say that I wasn't in the same condition!
So I wasted an evening when I could have been doing one of the many jobs that are piling up in my to-do list and didn't even get the sleep bonus I had promised myself.
And yet you might be thinking that it could have been worse. I could have gone to bed two hours later and still have got up at 3.30 and then I would have been even more tired. But I have a sneaking feeling that if I hadn't tried for the early night, it wouldn't have happened. Every time I go to bed really early, something seems to flick a "we don't need any sleep!" switch in one of the boys' heads. It's uncanny.
This has started me thinking about all the other things that are uncanny. For instance, it's uncanny how often both the boys manage to simultaneously and catastrophically fill their nappies just after I've got their shoes and coats on ready to go out.
It's uncanny how they are able to take a simple meal consisting of mostly dry items and spread it lavishly all over their clothes just when I need them to look decent.
It's uncanny how they seem to know when I've put particular effort into making them a really nice meal with all fresh ingredients and all they can do in response is to look at the food, shake their heads and stubbornly close their mouths! (Actually, that's only NB - OB approaches all food with the enthusiasm of a particularly effective vacuum cleaner!).
Going out is an event that often triggers uncanny events. I've already mentioned the nappy-filling, but there's also the tendency to suddenly empty the contents of every toy box all over the floor just as we're about to leave so that we are either made late by the tidying up, or we just leave it and come back to a bomb site later.
I wonder if they learn these skills as they go along or if they are born with them?!