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Sleeplessness

The Baby's and Mine

This baby is not asleep.

 

Getting the baby to go to sleep at night. It ought to be easy, right? Just feed her something and she drifts off naturally, smiling that angelic little infant smile.

Except sometimes she doesn't. Sometimes you feed her and she doesn't go to sleep, instead demanding more and more until she projectile vomits a gallon or two of milk all over the bed sheets and the blankets. Sometimes she refuses to eat at all, and just wails and wails for hours. Sometimes she's calm, possibly even quite cheery, but wide awake. The hours go by, as those little red numbers on the digital clock go up and up. Ten o'clock. Ten thirty. Eleven o'clock. Eleven thirty. Midnight...

 

And then the next day finally comes, and if you're lucky you might have had as much as five full hours of sleep. Or maybe you only had four. Either way, you don't have any choice in the matter so you just get up, make your morning coffee extra strong, stumble through your morning routine with your eyes half-open, and drag yourself into your work day like a man crawling on his hands and knees across the length of the Sahara.

 

Eventually, your day is over, and you cook some dinner. You're pretty tired, so be careful and don't leave the burner on or else you'll burn the whole house down. You play with the baby, and then you pick her up and take her downstairs. It's time for sleep, blessed sleep.

 

Getting the baby to go to sleep this time should be easy, right? Just feed her a little something and she'll drift off naturally, smiling the smile of the young and the innocent.

 

Unless, of course, she just doesn't...