And sometimes on the first night alone with the children everything runs ever so smoothly and you think to yourself that you are so awesome. So much so that the next day at work you brag to anyone who will listen to you about how great you are at bedtimes with the kids. You record a stellar time of 7:00 pm bed time on a Monday night. Monday night! That is huge, folks. Monday is the day that you are tired from dragging yourself back to work for the week. Monday sets the tone for the entire week.
Or so I thought.
Turns out, it is against all laws of nature to have two smooth bed times in a row. That brings me to the events that transpired on the evening of Tuesday, April 15th 2008, (our wedding anniversary) between the times of 6:23 pm and 11:01 pm.
6:23 pm: Reese rubs her eyes and lets out an adorable little sigh. This is my signal that she is tired. I dress her in her pajamas, rock her sweetly and lay her down for what will be a fairly uneventful evening for her. She falls asleep at approximately 6:41 pm.
6:42 pm - 7:19 pm: Henry and I play Spiderman vs. Doc Ock. He is Spiderman, and I am Doc Ock. We battle and wrestle for world dominance. I think I have him a few times, but ultimately, Spidey always wins. (This imaginary play would be eerie forshadowing of the evening that Henry and I would share together)
7:20 pm: Henry has a potty break.
7:21 pm: I praise Henry for aforementioned successful potty break.
7:23 pm: I begin coaxing Henry into his pajamas. He tells me there will be none of that and announces that he will be sleeping in his sweatshirt tonight. I concede. It seems silly to argue with him at this point. Everything is going so well.
7:40 pm: A demand is put forth for me to fetch Henry his much needed chocolate milk. He needed it. He absolutely needed it.
7:48 pm: I some how trick Henry into his bed. We rattle off a few knock-knock jokes together and say out loud to each other how awesome we think we are. I notice his eyes close shortly after.
8:02 pm: I creep out of Henners' room. It's no 7:00 bed time, but it's still respectable.
8:11 pm: Here's where it all goes south. Less than 10 minutes after I sneek from his room, this walks into our room.
He claims he has to potty. So we walk, hand in hand, to the potty. Nothing. I suspect this was all ruse to get out of bed. I tuck him back in his bed.
8:31 pm: Henry yells to me from his room that he has to try to potty once more. We try one more time.
Only the itty-bittiest stream. Nice try little-man. He then tells me that he did a good job on the potty and that he needs a treat. Here's the convincing face he gives me.
He's hard to resist, but I do anyway. I tell him that he did a great job, but it's too late for a treat. Unsatisfied, he gives me an even bigger smile.
This time, I fall for it. He gets his small treat and then shuffles off to bed. It is now 8:54 pm.
9:01 pm: Henry goes in for the kill. He grabs my hand and pats it gently. He asks me in the most polite way possible if he can call Grandpa Brent on the phone. He tells me that he wants to talk to Grandpa because he has a beard and because he loves him. Aw. How can I pass this up?
9:03 pm: Henry makes the phone call to Grandpa. Grandma Jo answers the phone. Henry quickly dismisses her and insists on Grandpa Brent. The hand off occurs. I am waiting for my son to profess his love to his Grandfather just like he said he would. However, moments later he makes a critical mistake.
9:04 pm: Henry immediately tells Grandpa Brent that he isn't tired and that he called to tell him he's not going to bed. Henry clearly thought that by me standing two feet away from him that I was not within earshot. He has now tipped his hand.
9:07 pm: After the brief phone call that my parents thought was hilarious (I seriously hear them laughing as I hang up the phone), Henry announces that he would like to call Grandma Granny. I check the clock. It's late but I think she's still awake. I consent. At this point, I am worn down. I think I can befriend the little guy by giving him a little of what he wants. After I win his trust, I will trick him into getting back in his bed. I don't know how I will do this, but I begin to formulate a plan.
9:08 pm: We dial Grandma Granny. The line is busy.
9:09 pm: I make a mental note to find out why Grandma Granny is on the phone at such a late hour.
9:14 pm: I somehow convince Henry to get back into his bed.
9:26 pm: Henry opens his door and announces to me from across the hall that he would like a drink of water. I ask him if he really needs it. He says, "I really, REALLY need it."
9:38 pm: Henry asks for a refill.
9:47 pm: After drinking his two cups of water (only filled 1/4 of the way each time) the slowest possible way ever. Henry spies his favorite cookies. He asks me for a "cookie brown". We go back and forth here for a good two minutes about the cookie browns. I think I have him beat when I say, "You can't have cookie browns right before bed." Henry quickly and thoughtfully counters back with, "But I not go to bed." Check mate.
Henry's stall tactics are proving wildly successful. He's put off his bedtime by almost two hours. He's doddled, pottied and used his good looks to win me over so far.
10:01 pm: Henry finds a pen with multiple colored inks. He insists on drawing. I oblige. This will give buy me some time to get a plan brewing.
10:15 pm: Henry is now growing groggy and disoriented. He is searching for another reason stay awake. He begins asking for Dad. I tell him Dad will be home soon. I can see he's starting to crack.
10:16 pm: I suggest to Henry that he should take a bath. He loves the idea. In his mind, things are going according to his plan. Little does he know that I have just turned the tables on him. Big time.
10:23 pm: Henry is now in a warm bath. His muscles are now relaxing. He's starting to get that tired, dazed look on his face.
10:31 pm: Henry tells me that he's sleepy now. I tell him that he can't go to bed yet. We have so much to do before Dad gets home. He gives me a dirty look. I am definitely smelling a momentum shift here.
10:42 pm: I dry the manster off and get him tucked in our bed all nice and comfy. He reclines thinking he's drifting off to sleep. His eyes are definitely glazed over now and he's talking gibberish about going to sleep in his own bed.
10:58 pm: Henry finally drifts off to sleep. This is the latest he's been up with me when he hasn't been sick. A new record, little man. Well played. World dominance.
11:00: I hear the front door open, footsteps up the stairs, then down the hallway. Look who shows up in the bedroom!
11:01 pm: Henry takes one look at Dad, let's out a huge put out sigh and says, "Where have YOU been?" He then gives him a love and tells Jeremy to "Get in bed now. Mom and me are so tired now."
And that's pretty much how I spent my anniversary night.