Andrew and I are a couple of well-rested, spoiled first-time parents. This I know. Jack goes to bed by 7:00 and sleeps for a minimum of eleven hours just about every night. So, yes, spoiled. Spoiled rotten. But this is precisely why we don’t know what to do when, for some mysterious reason, Jack wakes up at 11:00 at my in-laws' house where we are sleeping while we wait for the new kitchen floor to be refinished (oh yes, I said refinished, more on that later) and spends the next two hours cheerfully discussing whose chair is whose in the living room. “Dad-eee’s chay-ah. Beebaw’s (Grampa’s) chay-ah. Ghee’s (Gram’s) chay-ah. Mummy’s chay-ah. Ah’s (Jack’s) chay-ah.”
I am exaggerating, of course. We didn’t talk about chairs the whole time. We also spent quite a lot of time talking about the distant siren we had heard and how it was a fire truck, but it was gone now. “Chuck. Chuck gone. Chuck. Chuck fly way. Chuck. Chuck gone. Chuck. Chuck. Chuck… Chuck.”
I tried everything in my arsenal to get him to go back to sleep like usual, as well as many things I had never tried before. For example, I acquiesced to his unusual nocturnal request for yo-guh (yogurt) on the theory that hunger was keeping him awake. While in the kitchen, I was treated to a discourse on the objects therein: “Shoes. Dad-eee’s shoes. Sink. Yup. Mmhmm. Wah (water). Yup. Mmhmm. Cup. Yup. Mmhmm.”
Eventually I gave up, and, accepting the risk that he would keep the whole house awake, I put him in his bed and said, “Jack, it’s bedtime. Go to sleep.” I kissed him and left the room. He screamed in rage for about 5 minutes, fell silent, and we heard nary a peep until 6:00 the next morning.