I hadn’t been asleep very long last night before I heard Miles start howling over the baby monitor. His night light wasn’t turned on, and I assumed that he must’ve woken up in the pitch black and been a little freaked out. Rather than give him a few minutes to settle back down, I sprang from bed to take care of him.
He stopped sobbing after I scooped him up into my arms. He pointed to our bedroom, and while I really do want to limit the amount of time he’s spending in bed with us, I complied with his wishes. Jaclyn and I had left him with Lisa last night, so I thought it was possible that he just missed us.
Despite how tired he still seemed, he did not want to settle down for anything, wiggling in our bed as he grabbed us, kicked us, and moved his head REALLY close to ours and just stared at us until we acknowledged him. It wasn’t long before I took him back to his own room (under the pretense of making an attempt to use the potty).
He crawled back into his bed without much protest, and I said goodnight and turned away. He immediately began crying again.
“Do you want me to lay with you?” I asked.
Miles nodded. Then he scooted over and made some room for me. I clumsily fell into the cramped space Miles had allotted for me. I could barely get comfortable (relatively speaking) before Miles seized my left hand and tensed with excitement.
I attempted to leave the room a few times as I thought he was finally drifting off, but each time I couldn’t get farther than five feet away before he started crying out for me. The best I could do was convince him to let me go just long enough to retrieve a properly man-sized blanket from the living room.
Eventually, Miles did manage to fall asleep in the bed next to me, clutching my hand the whole time. I stayed up a bit longer than he did. Sure, the arrangement was several degrees south of comfortable and my body was already screaming at me about the certain aches and pains I would be experiencing the next morning, but that wasn’t what kept me awake.
There’s no question that raising a child is already hard work, and sleepless nights are perhaps one of the most challenging parts of the process, but I am also extremely aware that, for all the aches and exhaustion, moments like this are the ones I’ll miss one day. And sooner than I’d like. I’ll gladly take a bit of daytime drowsiness in exchange for this time together to linger just a little longer.