Last night we allowed Brendan to invite a friend over to spend the night. We had an extra ticket to the hockey game so I took the two boys with me. Brendan’s friend had never been to a hockey game before, so it was a brand new experience for him. The boys had a good time, and despite being up very late last night were very good throughout the whole evening.
When we got back to our house, I put both of our sleeping bags up into Brendan’s top bunk and told the boys to both climb up there and go to sleep. My thought process was that if the boys were sequestered in the top bunk that Cameron would be less likely to poke them awake when he woke up than if they were bunked out on the floor of the bedroom. It was sound logic, sound reasoning, and…it didn’t work.
Matt was home with the two little ones while I took the boys to the game. At bedtime he turned a movie on in the boy’s bedroom and let Cameron and Kaylee watch it. Kaylee crashed in Cameron’s bed and, rather than wake her up and move her, Matt just left her there for the night. So once the boys got home from the game there were 4 kids sleeping in 2 beds in 1 room.
Despite the fact that Cameron has really gotten his sleeping habits under control lately (he’s consistently been falling asleep at 7:30 pm and waking up around 7:00 am), he woke up around 6:15 this morning. Kaylee doesn’t usually get up that early either, but I get the feeling the two of them sleeping in the same bed may have been the culprit for the early morning wake up call. Whenever one of my kids gets up, they always pad across the house to my bedroom doorway. Being the light sleeper I am, I’m almost always awake before they ever make it past the doorway. Today was no exception. As Cameron and Kaylee’s silouette’s appeared in my bedroom doorway I called quietly that I’d be up in just a second. Usually when this happens I just turn on a cartoon for the early riser(s) and let them watch it until everyone is ready to get up for the day.
Cameron knows this. If anyone is going to be an early riser in our house its most consistently him. He’s been through this process with me a million times. But for some reason, today he decided not to follow protocol. As soon as I said I’d be right there, he and Kaylee disappeared from my doorway. When I say I’ll be right there, what I mean is I’ll lay here for up to 5 minutes and try to get my brain functional enough to work the TV and get the cartoon turned on. Today, when I didn’t hear Cameron and Kaylee talking in the living room after leaving my bedroom doorway, I decided to immediately get out of bed instead of trying to wake myself up first.
I padded across the house myself, trying to determine where the kids had gone. Then I heard a door snap shut. I prayed that the kids had gone into Kaylee’s room to play. No such luck. Cameron and Kaylee had gone back into the boy’s room and begun to play–loudly. I got there in a matter of moments, but the damage had been done. I ushered the two playing kids out of the room as a couple sleepy heads pop up over the edge of the top bunk. I was hoping that they might still be tired enough to go back to sleep without the distraction of the kids keeping them awake.
That may have worked, except that Kaylee took offense to being taken out of the bedroom like that. She sat in the hallway screaming her head off. It sounded like an air raid siren was blaring right there in the middle of my house. I got Cameron and Kaylee calmed slightly, and out into the living room to resume my original plan of turning on a cartoon and letting the bulk of my family continue to sleep. We hadn’t even gotten through the theme song of the cartoon before the two sleep deprived boys came stumbling out of the bedroom to see what we were watching. Meanwhile Kaylee was back to screaming, and Cameron was crying as I lectured him on waking up the two sleepy boys, so it wasn’t long before daddy was awakened from a short slumber as well.
So here we sat, the 6 of us all awake well before we should have been or (in the case of most of us) wanted to be. It was apparent from that moment that it was going to be a very long day. The kids were good as they sat through a cartoon while I prepared breakfast. I had a brief moment where I thought they might actually have a good day despite being so tired. I knew better though, and as soon as they finished breakfast and headed down to the basement to play it began.
Brendan and Cameron have taken sibling rivalry and fighting to a whole new level lately (but that’s another topic for another time), and almost as soon as their feet hit the basement floor they began to bicker. Bickering soon gave way to downright fighting. Before we knew what was happening my boys were at each others throats and Brendan’s friend was joining right in the fun. The ironic thing is he was upset about the two of them fighting. If they could’ve just stopped their arguing, he wouldn’t have been yelling at them. We did what we could to diffuse the situation by bringing Cameron upstairs and having Matt play with him, but it was too late to salvage the situation completely.
Brendan and his friend continued to nip and pick at one another. I’m not even sure they completely realized they were doing it. Little things would be said, and taken the wrong way, which would lead to more comments, and more hurt feelings. At one point, Brendan looked at him and said, “Fine. I’ll just never invite you over again.” It really was a sad state of affairs. Luckily there wasn’t much longer until his friend would be picked up to go home. If we could just keep the friendship alive until that point all would be well again on Monday.
Finally, they decided to sit down at the kitchen table and color. They spent the last hour together coloring, and pretty much not speaking to each other. But it was the good type of not speaking. It wasn’t a cold silence, more like they understood that the less they talked the less they would hurt one another’s feelings.
When the doorbell rang to indicate it was time for Brendan’s friend to leave, it came as a relief to us all. His dad asked how we were, and I had to be honest and tell him what a long morning it had been. I made sure he understood his child had been very very good for us, but that because of Cameron’s actions there was a good chance he was taking home a ticking time bomb.
I wish I could say that having Brendan’s friend go home was the end of our problems, but it wasn’t. We are eagerly counting down the hours until bedtime, and praying for a fresh start tomorrow morning.