Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Nighttime Stories

Early to bed, early to rise. So they say.

Early. Yes, my son is in the habit of sleeping early. We’ve helped him establish that pattern and I’m thankful because it gives me an ample time to catch up with housework and the Internet.

And early to rise. Yes, he is. And that's the reason why, almost always, I wake up to a mini pandemonium that is our room.

But between bedtime and rising up, there may be stories to tell.

Apart from the “mimi na” (calls to feed) times, there are nights when I am disturbed from my nocturnal activity (read:Internet) awakened from deep slumber due to Matt’s cries. Dreams, maybe nightmares, I can only wonder what. Maybe a horror story about the Vacuum Man is slowly unfolding in his sleep. But because I do not know what else to do, I just hold him while he cries his heart out for some unknown, maybe imaginary monsters.

There are better nights though when he smiles or even chuckles heartily with eyes still closed. Wonderful stories, I wager my last peso. He must be having a blast in those dreams!

And then there are some nights when he sleep-talks. Yes, he would mumble incoherent words and broken sentences. Stories? I still have to figure that out.

One story could be about my childhood. I used* to sleep-talk, too and it was a longstanding joke in the family. (*My husband says I don’t do that now, so maybe that’s a thing in the past.)

But really, I didn’t know that kids as young as Matt could talk while they sleep. I also don’t know if this is the right thing to do, but whenever he starts sleep-talking, I always try to strike a conversation as if it’s broad daylight and we’re talking about how fine the weather is. Like last night.

“Eat – eat – Mama, eat,” eyes still closed, Matt muttered.

“Eat what?” I softly asked.

“Eat na rice.”

What?! Eat rice? In the middle of the night?! No, I didn’t really believe he wanted to eat rice so I stayed still and quiet.

Matt, however, couldn’t remain still. He was slowly kicking his feet while muttering, “Get –get-”

After a momentary pause, “Get socks,” he continued.

Again, I couldn’t believe he wanted socks so I, unbelieving but ready to scramble and bring the socks if he asks for it again, whispered back, “Get what?”

Instead, he prattled on, “Get – get – Mama – get.” He was almost crying now but for the life of me I couldn’t make out what he really wanted. Restless and with eyes still closed, he finished off, “Get here Mama.”

Putting my arms around him, I gently assured him, “Mama is here now.” And she will forget about the lights, the PC and a job opportunity waiting in the other room for now.

I must have slept after that because when I woke up it’s already morning.

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Cecily R said...

Both my older kids had night terrors. They would have these awful dreams with their eyes wide open screaming for me. Isaac's seemed terrifying but Gracie's were more her speed. She'd cry over a My Little Pony or not getting a popsicle.

Isaac doesn't have them now, but he is a sleep talker. I can have full conversations with the kid and he won't ever remember any of it.

Melanie said...

I love the conversations you had while Matt was sleeping.

I've read about night terrors and I see the commenter above mentioned that too. You should talk to his doctor to see if that could be what is going on. I don't think there's anything that can be done, but at least you'd know.