Thursday, December 9, 2010

Tinker just hearing about bedtime.
Tink is afraid of the dark . .  . and quite a few other things.  Since the time change, when we put her to bed it is quite dark so she cries and yells and basically works herself into a lather.  Dear Hubby and I have had several conversations on the topic and we have tried a number of things. 

Recently I bought "glow worms" for Tinker and the Captain which we call "lullies."  The Blitz already had one and we can often hear him in the middle of the night;  he'll fuss a bit then hit the lullie which lights up and plays about one line of a lullebye and then it stops.  I thought having her very own little light in her little bed might help her.  I think it does help, but the minute that little light goes off, she starts to panic again.

Let me digress to say this isn't our first trip into this particular territory.  Sunshine was much the same -- scared of the dark and lots of other things.  We placated her with nightlights, hallway lights, bathroom lights, etc.  She wound up in my bed 3 nights of the week.  She was 7 before she slept an entire week in her own bed.  At 12, she still needs the hall light on and she wouldn't go outside in the dark by herself even if a giant ice cream sundae was waiting.  We're thinking maybe we didn't do this so well the last time!

Last week after a particularly raucous bedtime and several trips by both of us to try to calm the poor baby down, I said, "Maybe we should just turn on the bathroom light and call it a day." 

But DH said, "No, if we can hang in there, she will develop a way to cope with it."

Which of course makes perfect sense.  And then he went out of town. 

The first night she had a white-hot fit the likes of which I have never seen.  I mean never.  After about an hour of this (while the boys slept peacefully unaware), I lost my temper and told her to hush up and go to sleep because I could not take any more of her screaming which was only serving to make her sweat and make me mad.  She stopped.  Shocking.

Last night I put her to bed with timidity and trepidation.  It had been a long day with no nap and I could not imagine what sort of froth she was going to fly into.  She fussed a few minutes -- quietly -- and then all was silent.  Absolutely silent.  I almost went in to see if she was still breathing.  But instead, I heartily congratulated myself on my fine parenting skills and turned on the t.v.

Very late, around 11:00, The Captain kept knocking into the wall.  I finally decided to go check on him, thinking his legs must be tangled up in his blankets.  Of course it is pretty darn dark in that room.  So I stood there staring at him, on top of the covers but right up against the wall and noticed the kitty was on his bed.  The outdoor kitty.  I scooped her and put her outside and went back to cover him up. 

As I reached for the blankets to pull them back, they moved.  I fought down a yelp.  "It's the dog," I thought.  Nope, as I patted around, I felt a mountain of soft curls.  It was Tinker.  The Captain had let her into his bed so she wouldn't be afraid!  Now that is a good  brother. 

And phooey on the parenting skills.  Maybe next time.


  1. What a terrific story Dreena. I know you and hubby are just TERRIFIC parents. These are lucky kids. Jean Higgins

  2. Oh my gosh Dreena, I do love reading your blog. It always makes me cry. In a good way.