Sunday, March 7, 2010

Strong Wills

I should preface this by saying today was day 2 with a painful canker sore on the right side of my tongue. Don't know how it got there. Yesterday I was in pain but tried a numbing agent that really didn't work. This morning I felt absolutely miserable and in pain.

4a - Nikko wakes up crying. I go to his room and he's standing on the carpet, a little dazed. I point him back to bed and he looks at me with semi-wide eyes. I don't know if he'll fall back asleep right away, and my resolve to leave the room crumbles so I turn off his night light, making the room almost pitch black, and then I lay next to him. He seems to be awake for an eternity but them falls back asleep. Then, at 4:40a, I hear Ronin crying out. I leave Nikko and open Ronin's door. He's standing at it, tells me, "I want to play!" "Ronin, it's 4 in the morning, no one is playing, everyone is sleeping. Go back to bed." He scurries to bed and I tuck him in, but continue to sit on the edge of his bed because I don't know if I should stay or go. "Mommy, do you want to lie down next to me?" he asks. "I don't know," I say. And then he drifts off, but starts muttering, "I want juice and cookies." I decide to stay for a little while just in case he stirs again.
At 5a I walk back to my bed, and suddenly can't fall back asleep for another 20 minutes.
At 6a Nikko wakes up crying so I head to his room again. I lay down, we drift.
At 7a Ronin wakes up, so everyone else does, too. Coupled with the pain from my canker sore, I am in a foul mood and don't want to talk to anybody. I want to just go back to sleep! Luckily I didn't stay in a completely bad mood during breakfast, although I was tempted to snap back at Ronin for changing his mind so many times about what to eat. The weather was supposed to be awesome today, 40 degree temps and sunny! Denis said we should go to the nature center after breakfast, and then maybe to ABT to check out their vacuums and freezers, since there's a big sale next weekend. I didn't care what we did because my tongue hurt. It hurt to swallow, to chew, and to drink since there was a sensitive lump that kept brushing against my teeth. We managed to head out around 10a and went to ABT first. Audrey was in an umbrella stroller and the boys walked. While we talked with a floor salesperson, Ronin kept saying he wanted to go and "see the animals" at the nature center. Nikko kept flopping onto the floor and lay on his back. I really wonder why he was doing that because it looked really silly. I should have glanced at the ceiling to see if there was anything interesting up there. Audrey was very patient in her stroller. Our store visit was tolerable, but the boys were getting antsy at the end of it.

Off to the nature center we went! We love going there because it's got some real creatures like turtles, snakes, eagles, and a fox. There's an educational element to it, and the park district just did a great job building this resource. Nikko got attached to a felt sunflower, which I made him say good-bye to and put back. He wasn't interested in walking part of a trail. I think he was tired from the early morning waking as well as hungry, because he kept pulling me to the car and had a mini-meltdown. I had to resort to a Dum Dum lollipop to keep him at bay. When he finished it and signed for a cookie and said Candy, I refused him saying we would eat a real lunch at home. He was really unhappy about it, but I stood firm, no more candy! We all had lunch. Ronin was relentless about having some french fries that we got when we ordered some Buffalo Wild Wings to go, but when I called them about what kind of oil the fries were cooked in, the "beef estella shortening" didn't give me any peace of mind so I had to preheat the oven for some Ore-Ida french fries that are Ronin-safe. Earlier this morning, in the basement, Ronin had come across a free DVD cartoon from a Fisher Price GeoTrax train that I had forgotten about over the years. Nikko wanted it too, of course, and eventually he won the tug-of-war. I put this DVD on after lunch and it is now a favorite of the boys. Nikko fell asleep on the couch while watching it, and I let him sleep for an hour before having to wake him. Yes, it totally affected him at bedtime where he was awake and had a meltdown when I left the room. At tuck-in time, Nikko kept sitting up when I told him to stay in bed. He was protesting my leaving, bounding out of bed and falling to the floor. I had to pick him up and throw him back in bed. I finally turned around and left while he got up to protest. I heard him screaming and crashing to his knees while I went to tuck in Ronin and say good night. When I came back to Nikko's room, I opened the door and sternly pointed to his bed so he'd go back in. He threw himself back into the car bed and I noticed it had moved a foot off the wall for whatever reason. I tucked him in and said, while putting a finger sharply to his shoulder, "STAY IN BED. STAY IN BED. STAY IN BED." When I walked out, there were no more tears. Does this mean that he's always going to have one big protest session, requiring me to come back and put him in bed, and then he's good to go? That's been the pattern the last few times he's gone to bed awake. Something to ponder. Well, tonight (it's 1:17a right now) I am going to try to keep my resolve up and NOT go to either of the boys if/when they have a waking at 4a or 5a. I'll try to do this for a week. It will probably wake up Audrey, but these guys have to learn that they need to stay in their beds and put themselves back to sleep if they wake up early. I'll possibly get up at 6 or 6:30 for them, but not earlier. Don't know about 5:45 yet. This Cry It Out method seems harsh, but for these strong-willed boys who are steamrolling over me during the day as well as night, I think they need a more direct approach than just walking them back to their beds. I'll try it for a week and then reevaluate it. I don't have anything to lose, and maybe they'll catch on and just stay in their beds the rest of the night. I need to do SOMETHING, and putting Nikko alone in a room isn't enough. Now Ronin's started his pattern of morning wakings, and I've got to try to stop them both. If I can get out of the house tomorrow, I'll look for melatonin. As for my tongue, this evening while the kids were in the basement with Denis, I put some salt directly on the canker sore to clean it/seal it. Totally burns. Totally hurts. I took some ibuprofen for the pain. But honestly, it feels just a tad better than the entire day. I hope it will heal at night.

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