Posted by: Mark Nielsen | January 10, 2008

I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead

I have always had a hard time going to bed. No trouble sleeping, just going to bed.

I’m the type of person who wants to squeeze every last ounce out of a day, even if it’s been an uneventful or bad day. Today was certainly eventful, and I’ve been working toward doing a post on the presidential primaries, but I’m not ready yet, and not going to force it.

Plus I hate going to bed a bit early and then tossing and turning for half an hour. Much better to flop and snooze in five minutes flat.

Usually I’m up watching television. Not that I’m interested in anything after the Daily Show and Colbert (they’re baaaack! … not stellar with the writers still out, but at least they’re trying something). Nevertheless, I still hop around on cable, hoping for once something good will be on… maybe a Bogart flick I haven’t seen in years, like The Left Hand of God (it’s better than the above 1955 link’s review makes it sound… plus the review’s a cool piece of cutural history, a sign that Bogie and others were doing conscientious charitable work long before Live Aid, or Live 8… and I’d expect nothing less from Bogart, the only big star with guts enough to put Sen. Joe McCarthy in his place). Or else I’ll be at the computer, either writing or reading. I wouldn’t call what I do here “surfing”, as I don’t tend to visit a lot of sites. But if I’m writing, and want to come up with a little factoid or a good link, sometimes the search leads me to some interesting places.

Within my household, I’m not alone in this attitude of never wanting to go to bed. Graham’s got a later bedtime than a lot of kids his age (9pm), and yet he still stalls and stretches it out whenever possible. The mere mention of pajamas sends him into a tizzy.

I can remember being that kid, maybe even sneaking out of my room occasionally to peek around the corner of the kitchen door to watch something my parents had on television (this back in the Stone Age, before anyone in the middle class had cable television, before VHS, when the only Blu-Ray was that weapon the aliens used on Star Trek TOS). I was probably a couple years older than kindergarten, though. So I have a few years before I have to start looking over my shoulder.

Graham’s also got this strange habit of sometimes pulling his blanket, pillow and stuffed animals onto the floor and falling asleep there… as if being even two feet closer to the light or sounds in the other part of the house makes him feel more secure. I’m not sure where that fear and insecurity comes from with him.

Tonight he’s finagled an opportunity to sleep in the twin bed next to the computer. I wouldn’t normally bend to his insecurities and manipulations, but we’re trying to slowly transition him toward using this bigger bed, so this helps that transition. We’ve even offered him the bigger room, in which case his room would become the new office/guest room. But he’s not ready yet. Despite the dozens of things he says or does each day that show he’s pretty bright, he’s still somewhat behind in his emotional development. The baby in him is not completely faded away yet.

I guess I’m okay with that. He’s awful cute right now. But I’m also getting impatient.

Do I want him to grow up, or stay this age forever? Boy… betcha I’m not the first parent to ever face into that question. Good thing we don’t get any choice in the matter.


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