The Sleep Nazi

Prior to my becoming step parent (I actually prefer the term ‘Robo-Dad’…it just sounds cooler), my own bachelor’s bedtime ritual consisted of something along the lines of a pint of ice cream, two cats vying for equal lap time, a cup of tea and passing out cold on the futon while watching reruns of ‘Storage Wars’; absolute heaven if you ask me.  But now that I am also responsible for putting a seven-year-old child to bed on some nights, I realize how easy I really had it.

The Usual Suspects

Currently, as I am learning, HRH’s  own bedtime ritual consists of an exact series of ordered activity, including her before-bedtime snack, story, which of her stuffed animals sleeps where and even what order her blankets are to be laid; it’s just not as easy as getting her to fall into bed and tucking her in as I remember my own parents doing for me.  In fact, my own childhood bedtime ritual included nothing more than a poop, brushing my teeth and getting under the covers…and fast!  And if this process was not accomplished quickly and successfully, there was always the threat of an immediate whoopin’.  Hey, it was the 70’s…a good old-fashioned pre-bedtime beat down was still the preferred method of disciplinary action.

But, oh no!  When did bedtime become so complicated?  I mean, honestly, this child can be a total Sleep Nazi.  Her particular bedtime ritual is 100% total obsessive-compulsive and if it’s not followed to the exact letter, well, God help you.  Seriously, it’s just short of my having to walk around the bed 13 times counter-clockwise while burning incense by the light of a full Harvest Moon; as it is, it makes any Wiccan ceremony seem like a Liberal Arts student and faculty mixer.  It goes something like this:

  1. Purple fuzzy unicorn-turtle thingee at her feet
  2. Arrange the stuffed animals (6 in total) just so (thankfully, she will take care of this)
  3. Knitted blanket over the whole entourage
  4. Followed by the first bed sheet
  5. Followed by a small white baby blanket
  6. Followed by the main duvet cover
  7. Followed by the smaller blue polka-dotted blanket
  8. Make sure to leave the door open a crack (so the cats can visit)
  9. …and don’t forget the partridge in the pear tree

And, seriously, if ‘Marshmallow’ should ever end up too close to ‘Dora’, or should one of these multiple blanket layers ever be lain out of order, she suddenly turns into Kathy Bates from ‘Misery’:

“Terry, my Pink Bear always faces due South…”

So as I see it, I have a choice:  A) I can either get with the program and make an effort to figure all this shit out or, B) I can go back to old-school beat downs.  Where Option B is certainly appealing, if I actually go with it then there will always be the chance that she’ll write a book eventually and that definitely didn’t turn out too well for Joe Jackson, did it?  So, now, that leaves me with Option A which, it should be noted, will be about as easy for me to figure out as the formula for cold fusion.

I already know how this is going to end: I’m going to have crib notes written on my forearm at bedtime to remind me of what order things go in so as to not upset the Sleep Nazi unnecessarily.  It’ll be just like back in my ‘ol Alma mater days of going into a final exam unprepared except, this time, it’s to get a seven-year-old child to go to sleep.  Go figure!

God help me!

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1 Comment

  1. Kelly

     /  March 7, 2012

    Just be thankful you didn’t come into this when she was 2. The bedtime routine then was sooooo much more involved.
    It makes now look like a cakewalk 🙂


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