Monday, April 16, 2007

so this is how it is

About three or four days ago M decided there are monsters in her room. Lights need to be on, doors open. Naptimes and bedtimes are a series of hellish experiences; one of us going back and forth constantly. Multiple night wakings and an early morning roll call.

I realize this is something some of you experience all the time. However, I am completely at a loss; so that fact alone isn't quite making it all better. This is not the way it's been for the last year of her life. If there is one easy thing about M, it's sleep.

Or not.

And I am at a loss where the scary monster concept comes from. I mean, we don't talk about monsters, let alone the scary ones. Must be that daycare gig. The same daycare where she's getting decked on a regular basis. That alone was annoying, but now, Oh, The Monsters.

I am feeling a bit put out about it. In fact, I'd write more but there is a screaming kid in the other room crying about monsters during my previously precious naptime hour. I shouldn't feel bitchy about it, but I do.

And that's my own monster to deal with, isn't it?

Edited to say: I just learned of the shooting in Virginia. I sit stunned and shamed by my own whining while others were experiencing unspeakable hell this morning. There are no words for days such as this. Virginia.

Oh, Virginia. It's dark outside everywhere today.


kiki said...

I was so attached to A's naptime, it was seriously a loss for me when she gave it up although in the end it was liberating. But that's not what you were asking about.
I'm sure it's daycare - A picked up things like monsters and mean girls in that environment but it was a much better option for us than a babysitter, so we rolled with the not-so-good.
This wasn't my invention, probably read it somewhere online, but we used a spray bottle that was the monster be gone spray (filled with water) and she'd mist her entire room, closet, under the bed & anywhere else she thought monsters were hiding. It actually worked (I was skeptical) and then she forgot about them once she had control.
I'm quite positive the control issues are from her daddy (ahem).

carrie said...

Katie's room is decorated with an ultra tacky "touch light" with three light options: dim, dimmer and dimmest.

It may not be the cutest lamp on the block, but it has been a godsend to keep her in her own room. Whatever works!

Wishing you tons of monster spray, chanting and magic spells (and even a tacky lamp) to get a good night's sleep for all of you!


crazymumma said...

I haven't heard about Virginia yet. shit.

Scary Monsters and Super Freaks huh? It's a phase. Sorry. It's all I've got.

Things we have done: night lite, wearing mummy's watch, monster go away ritual, too much love in this house for a monster to live here, sleeping in our bed (we're marshmallows).

good luck hon.

Thailand Gal said...

Maybe your talking about this is a good thing. Sometimes we need to be reminded that life goes on, that somehow certain things are immutable ~ like kids being scared of monsters. Soon enough, they'll know about the real ones.

I like some of the ideas already mentioned. Give M. some sort of ritual, something she can do, that will allow her to get rid of the monsters. And comfort as you can.

What else can you do? You know?



PunditMom said...

Many monsters and scary things in the dark, at least according to PunditGirl.

I just hope we can keep her from the real monster news from Va. Tech. Is it good that our schools today, even her elementary school, go through lock-down drills? Whenever they have one, she has nightmares and is upset for a week out of fear of some "bad man" getting into her school.

Deezee said...

My son never slept, so I have no ideas about napping or monsters...except the one who barrelled through Virginia. Now that's a tear jerker. I can't even begin to understand the inhumanity we inflict on one another. So completely sad...

mamatulip said...

The Virginia thing upsets me to no end.

ECR said...

Talk about monsters.

My mother called me in tears about the Virginia shootings. She's never done that before.

meno said...

We had a brief experience with monsters. Brief being the important word.

I ahve been listening to the radio all day. What madness is this? I just can not understand. sad, i feel sad.

Emily said...

It's so sad, so sad...maybe kids know the real monsters are out there somewhere. Sometimes it's a scary world.

theflyingmum said...

With us it's nightmares. I tell Ben to think of "happy things" - Santa Claus, Easter eggs, Grandma, etc., etc.
Sometimes it works, sometimes not.
Sometimes my husband crawls into bed with him and sleeps there 'til morning. I don't do this, but that's just me.

NotSoSage said...

We, too, are dealing with spectres and lions and monsters everywhere. I put away a book a few months ago because Mme L had no fear of the dark until she read a book about conquering a fear of the dark.

Virginia. I'm so sad and so shocked. I would mark my coming-of-age, in terms of my understanding of the depths to which humanity can drop and the fact that being a woman was different, to coincide with the Montreal Massacre, which happened when I was 12 years old. It still strikes such fear into my heart, and I wasn't even there. I am thinking of all those students and hoping to learn more without becoming part of the inevitable media frenzy.

Don't think badly of yourself. Who was to know?

Blog Antagonist said...

I am a monster expert. I have two wildly imaginitive boys who, even at 12 and 8, still experience periods of monster paranoia. For little's pretty easy to combat. Get a plain plastic spray bottle and label it "Monster B Gone" put plain water in it, add some glitter (the glitter won't come out) and let her take it to bed with her. You could add some scented stuff if you wanted, but we never did.

Also, did you know that monsters are afraid of molten lava? They are. Petrified. So each of my boys have a lava lamp in their room. Have for years. The lava lamp gives them enough light to make them feel secure, but not interfere with sleep, like some bedside lamps can.

Lillithmother said...

I've missed you Jen...missed you and your thoughts and words and big-huge hearts so very much...but I'm back. See my blog and see if you can figure out why I was gone...

M's monsters...the spray bottle is an excellent idea, it has the air of "cleansing" that I so believe in. You may want to try putting a quartz crystal in her room as well, under here bed, in the closet, wherever the monsters pop out from...tell her they can't come in if the crystal is there because they don't like them (or something to that affect)...and the crystal will help keep her thoughts on a happier vibrational plane.

jen said...

that spray bottle is a VERY good idea. thank you.

Gwen said...

no advice on monsters; we just do a lot of cuddling and reassuring. My therapist tells me that the fears--however they are manifest (my youngest is terrified of coyotes and wolves)--have to do with separation anxiety, you know, the idea that M is growing up and away from you. When I am being a good mother (so seldom), I try to spend more time reassuring my children during the day of my love for them and the fact that I'll always be here, no matter where they go. I don't know if it helps them, but sometimes it helps me.

And my almost 4 year old just gave up her afternoon nap--it's painful!

QT said...

All others have given the best advice. Do you think this has to do with her big girl bed?

karrie said...

My M has always been a sleep challenge, but he too recently has kicked things up a notch in the middle of the night with "Mommy, I SEE something!" or "What's that SOUND?"


Felicia said...

I always say "how long has mommy been alive? a long time, and I have NEVER seen a monster." Usually, they buy it.

You have some really lovely phrases in your blogs.