Oh, the bedtime routine.
One of the myriad problems with this parenting gig is that they save the hardest part for last. BEDTIME. Bedtime should be in the morning — when we’re fresh and kind and sweet — and decent parenting still seems like a very real possibility. But no, the hardest parts — dinner and baths and bedtime — arrive at the end of the day, when we have nothing left. When the truth is, we are counting the minutes. Counting the moments until no one is the boss of us anymore. Until we can sink into that couch, book, Internet, or glass of wine — whatever our victory lap includes.
Each of our kids gets a story at bedtime. They never pick a good one, they pick the longest one.
And the little one wants to “help read” her book. So, let’s see. It takes her about six minutes to sound out each word, and so if the book is one hundred words, well, I don’t specialize in math but I am telling you that I am stuck in that room FOREVER. It feels like I will be reading that book with Amma until I die. And I know I’m supposed to be supporting her reading. I mean it’s good — this is good stuff, this wanting to read. I was a reading teacher, I know this is GOOD stuff about which I am supposed to be excited. But for me, exhaustion trumps excitement every single time. And I can’t help but notice that the ONLY TIME SHE CARES THIS MUCH ABOUT READING IT HERSELF IS AT BEDTIME. When she can hold me hostage and stay up six minutes later with every sounded-out-word. And so while I’m supposed to be thinking sweet thoughts, all I can think is: OH MY GOD. I AM GOING TO DIE. JUST JUMP RIGHT OUT OF MY SKIN. YOU SUCK AT READING. YOU SUCK YOU SUCK YOU SUCK. PLEASE GOD. PLEASE MAKE THIS BOOK..just..just …DISAPPEAR so I can take my victory lap. I DESERVE MY VICTORY LAP!
From here with Glennon Melton in The Huffington Post.
Our routine is even worse than theirs because we stay with our children until they fall asleep so it makes the whole thing just that little bit more drawn out. Smart phones are the world’s best invention for this time because I talk to you on Twitter while I am lying in the dark waiting for one or both of my kids to fall asleep.