Year 3, Day 344: Sounds of the Night-time X

For whatever reason, the last two nights have been extremely restless ones for Miles, typified by suddenly calling out around midnight, then descending into wailing that ultimately brings one of us into his bedroom in an (unsuccessful) attempt to coax him back to sleep.

“NO! WE DID IT ALREADY!” Miles shouted to an undetermined recipient last night around midnight, just as I was about to put my reading material down and go to sleep.

There’s always a moment, just after he calls out in his sleep, where the air is sucked out of the room and I just listen, praying with everything in my body that the noise was an isolated incident and Miles will just continue sleeping through whatever fretful dream he’s having. This week, those hopes have been dashed within ten seconds, as Miles has followed these slumber-fueled outbursts with very much awake crying.

Both nights have been intense enough to compel me to break one of our cardinal rules: Miles does not sleep in our bed. When his midnight freak-outs have only intensified when I’ve moved to leave his room, and in the interest of clinging to whatever sleep Jaclyn and I can get, I’ve carted Miles off to our room to go back to sleep. Largely, this has worked (although last night he plopped down in our bed, pointed at the TV, and said, “I wanna watch Mickey Mouse,” a request we immediately declined (I told him Mickey was unavailable between the hours of 9 PM and 7 AM).

Miles is definitely at an age where his imagination is starting to fire on all cylinders, and I wondered what might have caused him such distress in the middle of the night, so I tried to ask some probing questions on our way to daycare this morning.

“So,” I said, “sounds like you had a rough night, huh buddy?”

“No,” he said.

“No?” I asked. “Miles, you woke up crying last night.”

“Yeah,” he agreed.

“Well I’d call that a rough night.” At a stop light, I craned my neck to grace back at his seat. “What made you cry? Did something scare you?”

“Yeah,” Miles said. “A monster.”

“Do you remember what the monster looked like?” I asked.

“Red,” he said. “And was in bed with me.”

Cool, I thought, having seen enough movies to be at least a little freaked out. Well, looks like I won’t be sleeping tonight either.

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