Freedom is Dead

Well that’s it, our freedom has been taken away.  It all started with a bump in the night…

My almost two year old daughter had been crying in her crib for a few minutes, and I was trying to decide whether I was being a tough parent or an awful parent.  The crying stopped suddenly with a thud. I was going through all the possible scenarios of what could have happened as I slowly
looked upstairs, toward her closed door.  I couldn’t believe what I was seeing.  Her door was opening!  In one motion, I threw my laptop, bounded across the coffee table and sprinted up the stairs (We didn’t have a gate at the top of the stairs yet!)

I was about 3/4 of the way up the stairs when she turned the corner and met me face to face.  (Have you ever seen the movie Halloween?  Remember the scene with little Mikey standing at the top of the stairs, wearing his cute little clown costume, holding a bloody butcher’s knife?  That’s kind of what my daughter looked like, sans clown suit and bloody knife.  She had this look on her face that said many things at once…

“Look what I can do now!”

“Your baby jail will hold me no longer!”

“I know where you sleep!”

“What’ya doing?  Relaxing?  Having a beer and watching a little TV?  You told
me it was night-night time!  Is this what you people do every night?  Good luck
pulling that off again…EVER!!!”

So now, everything has changed.  We finally got her back to sleep in her crib, but my wife and I slept with one eye open the rest of the night.  (I thought as I dozed off:  What about a crib with barbed wire around the top?  I could paint it white, or maybe pink.  I can hear the naysayers now, “You can’t put barbed wire around the top of a crib!”   I know, razor wire would be much more effective, but come on.  I’m no animal!)
The next day I bought and installed a gate for the stairs and finished toddler-proofing her room.  I planned on changing her convertible bed from a crib to a toddler bed, but didn’t quite make it.  My wife assured me, “Don’t worry,
she won’t do that again.”

Then it came: Thump! And there she was, wandering down the hall, hell bent on getting into bed with us.  That’s when the
battle began between my wife and my daughter, with me caught in the middle.  My daughter would get up, come to my side of the bed and stare at me with her, “You can’t tell me no.”, eyes.  I would turn to my wife and foolishly, attempt to speak.  She would just shake her head and turn away.  (Translation: “Get up and take her back to bed!”

I do take her back to bed, and so begins the 3+ hour war of attrition in the hall between her room and ours.  I personally don’t have a problem with her sleeping with us.  It’s pretty much the only time she allows any display of affection.  (Hmm, kind of sounds like her mother; Must be genetic!)

Her mother does have a point, though: I don’t want her developing any long-lasting, bad habits…

I can hear it now, “Mom, Dad, this is Bruce”.

I reply, “It’s nice to meet you Bruce, but that’s my pillow!  Now scooch on
over son, this bed is only a queen.”

(Those of you that know me will realize this story was started quite a while ago, and just now finished.  Sorry for the delay.  My daughter is now in a full size bed, so the only bumps in the night lately are when she falls out of the bed.  Apparently, the worrying never ends.)

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