Blogging about life in Minnesota, raising our six kids with Down syndrome while battling Breast Cancer.

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor in the morning the devil says, "Oh shit! She's up!"

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Or Not

Most days Angela gets up on her own around 7:30-8:00, but yesterday I had to d.r.a.g. her tired little butt out of bed at 8:30, but wasn't successful in getting her into an upright position until 8:45. Ummm...I drop her off at school at 9:00! And she still needed to get dressed. And eat. And get in the car!

So last light I set her alarm clock for 8:15 which gives us plenty of time, because once she's awake she's pretty easy in the morning. This has not always been the case, and I have to credit the expertise of her behavior specialists and the several thousand dollars spent on behavioral services to get to this point!!! And, the fact that I'm now driving her to school, which is an entirely different post I'm sure you'll be begging me to write about, right? 

We are backward folk around here, and tend to use the alarm clock more on the weekends; not to get up, but to STAY in bed. I learned this trick when my boys were little, and like all little kids have this thing about waking up with the sun. Angela's brother Bryon was probably the worst. I swear the kid never slept, and when he did it was lightly so he didn't miss a thing in the house. He was one of those hyper aware kind of kids. Anyway, long after the other kids had started sleeping a little later in the mornings (like second grade or so) Bryon was still getting up incredibly early. Usually because we had a rule that on weekends and during the summer, the t.v. got turned off at 10:00 a.m. and didn't get turned back on until after dinner. (which was quite late in the summer months because of my ability to put off cooking as long as possible.) And you know the world might end if he was shortchanged in the t.v. watching department!

Although the boys were of an age to be up and about the house without direct supervision for bit while mom and dad pretended to get a few more minutes sleep, the fact is we were out numbered. It wouldn't take more than a few minutes before the plotting and scheming started and before we knew it mayhem would ensue, requiring a parent (usually me) to get out of bed and break up some evil plan to take over the universe or cook their own breakfast. 

Bryon was always the culprit. He would get up really early, and the other boys, knowing he always had the best ideas, would follow shortly thereafter. (although, thinking back, I'm pretty sure he was very quickly bored watching cartoons alone so he went and woke them up!) I started setting an alarm for him. 8:00 seemed to be a reasonable time. Not too early, but not too late so as to torture the poor kid. "You're not allowed to go downstairs until the alarm goes off. You can read a book or go back to sleep, whatever, but if you wake up anyone else I'm going to set it for 9:00 next time." I was mean like that. 

Bryon shared a room with Tyler who was a great sleeper and slept through a tornado or two. But Tyler was also super smart, and quickly got annoyed with Bryon laying in bed wide awake at 6:00 a.m. waiting for that stupid alarm to go off, blowing out long, very loud sighs in an attempt to wake Tyler up for company without actually being guilty of waking him up. So Tyler took it upon himself to change the clock to a new time so Bryon would go away. Yeah, that's about the time we split up the bedrooms so Bryon could have a room all to himself. 

Thats how we use the alarm clock for Angela on the weekends. For some reason, while she sleeps decent during the week, on the weekends she's usually up around 6:00. So out comes the alarm. "Sweetie, (notice I talk to her far different than I did the boys.) Tomorow is Saturday. That means we don't have to to get up in the morning. You get to sleep as long as you want. In fact, we're going to set this here alarm clock, and you don't even have to get up until it goes off. How cool is that!" There have been many early weekend mornings when I've heard her awake in her room, talking to all the invisible people she shares her world with, explaining to them it's too early to get up, and before long she talks herself back to sleep. I will admit to occasionally sneaking into her room at 7:50 and turn off the alarm, then play dumb later. "Hmm...I'm not sure why the alarm didn't go off. I must have pushed the wrong button last night."

So yesterday was not one of our better mornings, and since she's been staying up later in the evening to enjoy the longer days (and to torture me) I set her alarm for 8:15 this morning so as to not have a repeat performance. 

She came into my room at 7:30 this morning, looking like the wild woman she does when she sleeps hard.

"Angela. How come you're up already? Remember you didn't have to get up until 8:00"

She looked at me like I was speaking Chinese, staring at me blankly for several seconds. 

"Or not." she said, and went to turn on the T.V.

I need to rethink my strategy. It's not working the way it did with the boys. Thank goodness she doesn't have anyone here to plot and scheme with. Wait.. now I'm screwing up THAT system too! It is a never ending battle, this parenting thing. It's us against them. Survival of whoever can outsmart the other. Angela won this morning. And now we're adding a partner to plot and scheme with. I can't wait to listen to them plotting together!!! I'm excited to be woken up by two young ladies having fun together. (don't even think about raining on my pretend parade and saying they might bicker like the boys did. This is my blog, and THAT's not happening with my girls!) 

1 comment:

Sunnie said...

I think we need an Angela video....maybe dressed in her best Beth Chapman....LOL...kidding but an Anglea video would be great!!!