Bedtime is to parenting as The Jersey Shore is to New Jersey. Everyone could do without the “situation,” but it’s here to stay. It’s the time of the day when moms and dads everywhere begin to question if they are a parent or if they are actually the World’s Worst Circus Ringleader as their children engage in a gymnastic wrestling match even Russia can’t top.
It’s a reasonable possibility that I’d rather go to the DMV than get my kids ready for bed. Seriously. By this time of day, everyone is fried, yet there’s SO much to do that requires energy and patience. Between feeding, brushing teeth, bathing, stories, songs, etc., I’m surprised I even make it to the end of the nightly shenanigans with any hair on my head at all. I call bullshit too, by the way, on the whole “tear free” shampoo thing because in my house, this time of night is FULL of [fake] tears that come with an accompanying cry which sounds more like a dying bird than an actual human.
I think I see the most tears when it’s time to brush my 3 year old’s teeth. When he wails and moans about having to do it, I’m like, “Ohhhh you don’t want me to brush your teeth??? Well, I ‘d rather stab myself in the eye with this toothbrush, but I’m trying to get parent of the year here and that’s not going to happen if all of your teeth fall out so open your mouth before a monster jumps out of your closet and opens it for you.” Just kidding, I would NEVER say that I’m trying to get parent of the year.
After brushing his teeth, then it’s onto “I wannnnttt tooo skip the bathhhhh.” At this point, I’m more keen to negotiate because I’m well past ripe for my own “bath” aka drowning myself in chardonnay and pinning inspirational quotes so it looks like I care that I have never done any actual physical activity in my yoga pants although this bedtime battle may count…
With the advent of skipping my toddler’s bath, I’m one down, with one to go, and running on “E.” So usually, I’ll go straight to pj’s for the baby as well, which seems like it would be easy except that attempting to dress a mobile, wriggly baby is like trying to hog tie a rabid spider monkey. Seriously, why aren’t there more buttons on baby pajamas? I mean, they are just one button shy of landing me in a straight jacket. If you’re going to take it this far, why not go the distance Carters? Weak.
By the time both of my kids are in pajamas, they’re “technically” ready for bed, which means we must begin the not actually necessary routine.
You know what I’m talking about – the routine that has to be exact or you have to start all over routine. The reading the same book for the zillionth time, the I’m thirsty, need a hug, you missed a verse in the 14 hundred line Wheels on the Bus song, I dropped my teddy bear, I need another hug, a capillary on my baby toe isn’t covered by the blanket, but you forgot a kiss, jump up, turn around three times, wink while lifting one leg, and go the fuck to sleep routine.
Then comes procrastination via the potty, which using during the day could be more repulsive than the thought of Kim Kardashian and Kanye West having a baby together, but bedtime… well, all of the sudden the potty is where it’s at!
The other night, when it was finally time to turn out the lights and walk out the door approximately 3 seconds shy of me losing my shit in a very serious way, my son cried out, “WAIT Mommyyyy. One more thing.”
Biting my tongue as hard as I could I asked, “yes dear?” To which my 3 year old replied, “Good night mommy, you’re the best,” and….. didn’t I feel like the biggest ass in the world for being annoyed that he was standing in the way of me and a box of the finest wine money can buy?!
Then, once it was all said and done, and both kids were actually sleeping, I found myself getting off of the couch, peaking in their rooms, and risking it all just to catch a glimpse of their sweet little faces sleeping so peacefully.
WTF is wrong with me?? Oh that’s right, by that point, my judgment was flawed thanks to my love making session with Mr. Franzia.