Remotely Routine

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Every parent and pediatrician touts the importance of having a routine for kids:

Bathe them in lavender; it’s calming!

Lay them down while they’re still awake!

Make them wait to instill patience!

Rumor has it that if we continually and consistently do these things, our little humans will grow into good big humans.

I buy it. I’ve found that consistency is key with my kids…and my husband. In fact, he’s so consistent with his nighttime routine that at this point in our relationship, I am able to anticipate and dodge his right hook. Okay, that didn’t come out right. Let me explain.

Our Nightly Ritual

After the kids are down for the night, the hubby insists we smash together cuddle in this old, over-sized upholstered chair in the living room. We finally have a chance to talk about our day, catch up on some must-see-TV like The New Girl, and Zach almost immediately falls asleep. Romantic, no?

I eventually wake him and send him upstairs where, in a foggy haze, he brushes his teeth and mumbles something unintelligible regarding a topic we had been discussing an hour earlier. He rarely makes sense after 9pm. I take FOREVER to ready myself for bed: washing, moisturizing, maintaining the caterpillar I call eye brows, etc. By the time I hop under the covers, Zach is again sound asleep. Only this time, the TV is on “his” channel and he’s got a death grip on the remote. This is why I normally end my days watching Piers Morgan interrupt his guests and bad mouth the United States. Once I’ve met my Piers limit (about 4 minutes–I miss Larry King), I pry the remote out of Zach’s hand and wake him, ever-so-gently, so that he can take off his glasses.

Just so we’re clear, the man MUST take off his glasses; he’s a jerky kind of sleeper, a tosser and turner, and I’m always afraid he’ll roll over and end up with glass shards in his eyes. I’m a mother; I’m allowed to be paranoid.

Each night when I nudge him and whisper, “Take off your glasses,” the man is startled by my presence. We’ve been together for 10 years; one would think he would be used to my ugly mug by now. Granted, there may be a homemade toothpaste zit cream lathered on my chin, but he signed up for better or worse, right?

Like a baby witnessing his first sneeze, my husband  is alarmed and confused by my “take off your glasses” request. Sometimes, he jolts upright, staring like he doesn’t recognize me. Most often, thought, he croaks, “Okay, they’re off,” without ever having moved a muscle. This is when I’m forced to try to remove said glasses myself. This is also when sh*t gets real.

The second I reach for him, he starts swinging at me like I’m trying to smother him. I’ve contemplated wearing a hockey mask for my own protection, but I fear I would give him a stroke. On the other hand, I may need to don that mask in the event that I give up trying to get those glasses. A few times, I’ve been too tired to turn off the television or bother with the shards-to-the-eye situation and have just fallen asleep.

It didn’t turn out well.

Please recall his being a “jerky” sleeper. I don’t know if the man has dreams that he’s falling from Mt. Everest or what, but like clockwork, his restful sleep is disturbed by a fit or convulsion of some kind. It’s only once, but that’s enough. The remote that he’s holding on to like it’s the last Twinkie on earth becomes a weapon. I, the unsuspected, sleepy wife, become the victim.

I know he doesn’t mean it, but when that friggin’ remote comes crashing down on my head, I react in a blind rage. I’ve been known to grab the remote and throw it, and then wake him to get it. I’ve also yelled at his still sleeping self, which prompts a slurred, “I’m sorry.” He says it, but I know he doesn’t mean it.

Some routines are certainly beneficial. Keeping meal time relatively the same for the sake of hungry bellies and evening dance parties to get the sillies out before bed are good.

Having an unnatural fear of the remote control due to a crazed lunatic bedtime husband is not good.

Does your spouse do anything crazy while he/she is asleep? Please tell me I’m not the only one!

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4 thoughts on “Remotely Routine

  1. I always have to wake up my husband to go upstairs. His groggy, but hasty, response is always “I’m coming I’m coming.” As if he was one step behind me as I go to shut out lights and grab the dog’s dinner. Never once does he say “Thank you for waking me from my peaceful slumber so that I can jump into an ice cold bed with you.”

  2. Maybe you should wear a helmet to bed? That should give your proper protection. As for me, the only thing my hubby does is lay his heavy arm across my chest when I’m sleeping. It feels like a 100 pounds of dead weight!

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