Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Strange Rituals

Since one of the main reasons I blog is to keep a record of sorts on my childrens' antics (so I can torture them when they're older), I thought it prudent to write about their.....unique.....bedtime rituals. This may not even be funny to some readers of this blog, but that's okay. I do not want to forget the many nights I endured these routines.

Every night, after we all pray together before bed, Hannah goes to her room and I tuck Seth in first. She starts by carefully getting her bed ready. This involves the proper arrangement of her big stuffed lamb, her stuffed Eeyore, her care bear, and her little Hannah (a tiny little doll she named after herself). She would have had several more stuffed somethings if I let her, but they were overtaking her bed and leaving her little room to sleep, so she had to make the choice of which ones she wanted sleeping with her. After carefully arranging her companions, I bring her some water for a little sip. This is essential. After I tuck her in, we begin by saying, "noses" (and rubbing noses), "butterflies" (and giving butterfly kisses to each eye), "chins" (we rub chins - both sides!), "cheeks" (we touch our cheeks together on both sides), "foreheads" (we rub foreheads on both sides), "kisses" (I kiss both her cheeks, and she kisses both of mine). She then repeats this saying, every night:

"I know that dad works tomorrow;
I know that there's no church tomorrow (or that there is church if there is);
I know there's no Sunday School tomorrow;
Am I having school tomorrow? (to which I reply yea or nay);
I'm going to start cuddling my big lamb, my Eeyore, my care bear, and my little Hannah;
I'm going to start playing with my pillows if I feel like it, if I want to;
I'm going to start sleeping if I feel like it if I want to;
I'm going to start imagining if I feel like it if I want to."

She then tells me she loves me and tests me out to see if I'm up to the quadzillion questions she has stored up for just such a time (which I'm usually not). I then go out the door, leave it open about a quarter of the way - this is important, because if it's an eighth of an inch out she notices - and blow kisses and wave from the partially open door.

Now for Seth. I have to carry him to bed. Yes, I know I could make him walk but I guess I don't happen (at this time ) to see a reason why I can't carry him, so I do. He has to put his book away and then turn off his light (while in my arms). I count to four, with kisses on his cheek in between counts, and throw him on his bed. He then says, very seriously, "We can snuggle for a bit after kissing, okay?" To which I very agreeably reply, "Okay." I then kiss his chin, his nose, his forehead, and each cheek in that precise order. Every once in a while he will giggle if I change it up a little, but most of the time this is serious business. He repeats the exact same pattern of kisses on me. He then says,

"America, America." Then, "We all did it!"

I have no clue where this came from. None. If I happen to try to sneak in a different kissing pattern, ie., chins, cheeks, forehead, nose, he promptly tells me I can't because I'm not doing America. When I ask him exactly what America is, he draws a funny design in the air with his finger.

You see why I have to record this. There is simply no one else I know of whose son (or daughter) perform these strange rituals.

I finish off by snuggling him - which is rubbing his back or his belly (I'm telling you, I pity his poor wife) - for a few minutes. I then give him a quick sip of water, again essential, tuck him in and kiss him again on the cheek. As I stand by the door, he says,

"You can sleep with me on Wednesday, okay?"

Not Tuesday. Not Friday. Wednesday, and only Wednesday. Again. No clue. But in order for him to be at peace he must ask me this. I've learned to respond by saying "yes", because he has no expectations that I know of. We then blow kisses and wave a couple times before I go out the door.

Tonight as I was snuggling him, I told him that "there was only one Sethie".

"No there's not, mom. There's two Sethie's," was his reply.

"Who is the other Seth?" I asked.

"He's black. I've never seen him."

"Then how do you know he's black?" I ask.

"Because he is," was his response. "He doesn't live here."

"Does he have a mommy, daddy and a sister?" I asked.

"Yes. But he has two sisters," he says.

"He does? What are his sister's names?" I ask.

"Hannah and Doogy Foogy."

And a chuckle escapes from my mouth.

"Was I funny, mom? Did I make you laugh, mom?" he asks delightedly.

I give him a final, extra, squeeze. Yes. He did make me laugh. And smile.

And my heart is happy with my two, very unique, very wonderful children.

My precious gifts from God.


Amanda said...

That's wonderful, Darla -- no, we never understand why they do what they do. But somewhere, in those creative innocent heads of theirs, it all makes sense!

And, have you ever thought, maybe we are the ones who just "don't get it"? LOL

Darla said...

Amanda - how nice to hear from you! I am sure I just "don't get it", and yet I question why I don't because I remember how many "strange" things I did as a kid that I never told anybody.

Anyway, great to hear from you again.

Amy St. Pierre said...

Sigh...bedtime is really just such a ritual for most kids! Mine are always trying the drink thing, the million kisses and hugs, sharing things that happened during the just never ends...I wonder if I did it too??? LOL!!!

Darla said...

Yeah, the drink thing, the bathroom thing, the "oh I forgot to ask you something" thing - the list is endless.

Nice to hear from you Amy. Congratulations on your baby girls, by the way!

Amy St. Pierre said...

Thanks, Darla! What a blessing! Never thought it would happen to me...the twin thing...but I am overflowing with thanks and happiness. Four kids!!! Yikes but at the same time, I am so wonderfully blessed!

Rachel and Aaron Roberts said...

Too cute.. the only memory I really have of your kids is when they were little, little, little! That's how I still picture them in my mind. :o)

Darla said...

Rachel: Nah, they're big....with big imaginations.....big mouths....

Hannah will be 7 in the spring and Seth will be 5 then as well. It seems I just blinked and they stopped being babies.

Hold on to yours, as I'm sure you hear often. Tomorrow he'll be graduating.....

Ain't I just a bucket of inspiration?