I can still hear him. It’s almost inaudible, but there. He’s softly humming to himself.
I hold my breath. I can feel sweat running down my brow. I exhale slowly and try ignore it.
I extend my foot. Very slowly I set the foot down on the floor.
A floorboard creaks loudly and I freeze to the spot.
The humming has stopped.
He is listening.
I shift my weight somewhat and press my body next to the wall. If I can just move out of the room fast enough he won’t detect me.
I take another step and there’s no sound. I exhale slowly. I can see the light coming from the other room. Two more steps and I’ll be out of here.
I take another step and suddenly my knees croak. It sounds like someone just broke off a branch off an old Oak tree. Thank you Age.
Suddenly I see a dummy flung across the room. This is not a good sign. I peek around the corner.
He is definitely awake. He is listening and he is NOT happy.
I know what must be done. I don’t like it as the risk of getting spotted are extremely high. I lie down flat on the floor and army crawl over to the dummy. With the dummy safely in my hand, I crawl over to the cot and deposit the dummy inside the cot. I look up tentatively. He’s taken the bait.
It seems he has settled back. There is hope yet. For now.
I stay lying down for what seems like hours. I can’t hear a thing apart from my own heartbeat.
I crawl back to the door and slowly get up to my knees first, then to standing.
I decide to risk it and take another step. I’m so close, I’m in the light, I’m standing at the opening.
The new episode of Bodyguard is lined up and ready on catch up downstairs.
That’s when it starts. First, a kind of anxious and low key sound that progressively moves into full blown screaming…
The baby is up and the baby wants Mama.
Recognise the scenario?
Separation anxiety in children is a BEAST. They never tell you that in your NCT classes do they?
My youngest is 11 months and have for the past month or so been going through a tough phase of separation anxiety. No one but Mum will do.
I can leave him for a few minutes with someone else, but after a while he will look around for Mum and cry. Nighttime is a real killer.
I know it’s anxiety, rather than say hunger or thirst, as he will stop crying as soon as I pick him up or soothe him.
So what do you do? You ride it out.
There’s nothing for it. Cuddle baby, soothe and comfort baby. Soon she/he will understand that Mum (or Dad) has to go away for a little while but they always come back.
I know the books that say “let baby cry out” and all that. If that’s how you want to approach it then by no means do so. No judgement. But it’s not for me. I’ve found with all my kids that patience and perseverance do the trick.
It doesn’t mean it’s an easy ride though. My brain feel like porridge. I’m tired and short tempered. I feel about 200 years old. My god, I’m so, so tired.
How long can you actually function on zero sleep but huge quantities of tea and coffee? Has there been a study on this? If not, there should be.
But the truth is – these days fly by so fast. Blink your eyes and they’ll be teenagers begging you to stay out of their room.
My oldest is 9 and he doesn’t need me in the same way anymore. Although I welcome the maturity and independence in him, I do also miss hearing those little feet tiptoeing into our room and snuggling up to us in bed.
So for now, I’ll have to keep my Ninja moves nimble and ready for action and up my coffee consumption.
Richard Madden will have to wait.