From dancing to dentistry, just like that

my 4:45am companion, with sound effects

I did not take photos at last night’s show. It was late for mamas at mid-week, a decade and a half older than the kids who came out to dance. But we mamas came out to dance too. And we still know how, despite our complaints about the lateness (so late!) and the loudness (first band, so loud!), and the “Oh God, I hope my hip holds out” (so lame!).

The dancing. It was really fun. We danced for the second band, but the really inspired getting down didn’t happen until Kidstreet arrived on stage. I love my siblings! Their sound is infectious, their performance is joyful and welcoming, and my sister is just the most gorgeous and composed creature on stage that you can possibly imagine (whether or not she can see it herself). As the set progressed, my dance moves got more adventurous, less fearful of will-this-hurt-my-hip? By the last song of the night, I’d shed that decade and a half, at least inside my own head. Walking home through the quiet of freshly fallen snow, I had to admit that I was limping ever so slightly. But when I woke up this morning, my hip actually felt years better.

Seriously. I could jog across the living-room without pain. How bizarre is that?

Let me tell you about the few hours between dancing and morning. I was gloriously asleep when the pitter-patter of feet woke me. CJ had gone to the bathroom by himself (yay!), returned to his bed and decided he didn’t like the looks of it (uh oh!), and come into our room lugging his water bottle and a giant sheep stuffie (noooooooo!). “I had a bad dream!” he announced, which is his new code for “I don’t want to go to sleep.” He attempted to climb into bed beside me. The sheep didn’t fit. Seriously, it’s enormous. We could all see this wasn’t working. I dragged myself upright, walked him back to his own room, explained about it being the middle of the night, sleeptime, etc., tucked him in.

Pitter-patter, pitter-patter. No sheep this time. “Is anyone downstairs?” he asks from the side of the bed. It’s pitch black. 4:45am. “Nope. We’re all sleeping. Because it’s the middle of the night!” He climbs in beside me, snuggles up. I’m too tired to object. We “sleep” like this for an hour until I just can’t stand the wriggling anymore. (I know lots of parents share beds with their children, and I just want to know: do those children hold still in their sleep? Because mine are like squirrels, if squirrels were much larger and not furry and had sharp elbows and hot breath and digging heels).

“Listen,” I said at last. “I can’t sleep like this. I’m going to your bed.”


“You can stay here, and I will go sleep in your bed. Or, you can go sleep in your bed and I’ll stay here. One or the other. Because I’m not getting any rest and I have to get up in an hour for a dentist appointment.”

“My blankets are too small.”

“Not the green one. The green one is plenty big. So what you do want: should I go sleep in your bed, or will you?”

Surprisingly, he chose to return to his bed. And then he slept.

And much too soon after that I was sitting in a reclining chair staring at beige ceiling panels, listening to top-forty soft rock while a masked woman scaled tartar off my teeth.

If I were sketching a trajectory of pleasantness upon a graph, say, from midnight until nine this morning, it would look like a ski hill. High to low, baby, high to low. The nighttime bed-sharing was definitely several graph points above the hygienist prodding exposed nerve endings between my teeth. At least with the bed-sharing I got to snuggle up to a hot-breathed, wriggling, pointy-elbowed creature of intense dearness. With the dentist all I got was a return appointment a week from today to fill a cavity — my first in TWENTY YEARS.

See. Straight down. Like a ski hill.

It’s a life.

Wondering and wandering in Blogland
Bits and bobs


  1. Susan Fish

    I guess on a gray winter day downhill is marginally better than flatlining in a low place. I felt all the better for dancing the other night too, but mine was in my living room.

  2. m

    Before Harriet was born, we would all go to sleep in our proper beds, but when we woke for the morning, we’d been in all sorts of different places. Often at least one parent was in a kid’s bed, with or without the kid. At least once both boys ended up in our bed and we retired to their beds. It was a rare, rare occasion when we woke up where we went to bed.

  3. Carrie Snyder

    And now that Harriet’s here your boys are keeping to their beds?! How did you manage that?

    I really like my bed. I don’t want to sleep in anyone else’s …

  4. Margo

    oh this kid-at-night thing is so familiar! and exactly how I handle it too. Never did great with kids in the bed for more than a few minutes or a Saturday-morning snuggle.

    Sorry about your cavity – that stinks. I got my first one after the kids were born – they sucked away all my calcium!

  5. Carrie Snyder

    Blame the kids for the cavity–never thought of that! The dentist (who is not my usual dentist) kept saying, I don’t know how you got this cavity if you floss as much as you say you floss … and I’m an obsessive flosser. I wasn’t making it up to impress him! I will be dreading next Thursday all week.

  6. Carrie Snyder

    Susan, I prefer the ski hill to the flatline. I can always ride back up for another run.

    Dancing is always good! Did you dance alone in your living room? Or did you have company? 🙂

  7. m

    I think they know they aren’t allowed in our bed because Harriet is in there with us. They will come and get Kevin and he will occasionally end up in one of their beds. Once we set up the crib and Harriet is in there, I don’t know what will happen. Will probably be back to bed bingo.

    (I hate our bed. The boys’ mattresses are much newer and I always sleep better in their beds than in my own!)

  8. Victoria

    we did a family bed. but only for a year. and when we were young and poor, so it was a DOUBLE BED!! Can you even imagine? I look at double beds now and completely marvel at how retarded we were. ah well. it doesn’t seem to have harmed us permanently…

  9. Susan Fish

    I was the only dancer, but I had two people with me who enjoyed the music. And, I presume, the dancer.

  10. Cristy

    I love dancing. Keep it up.


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