I woke up this morning to light in my bedroom. As in sunshine. Outside the windows. And although I’m well aware that the sun will, indeed, come out tomorrow, I don’t usually have the opportunity to awaken to it. My Nate, you see, is an early riser. We’re fortunate these days that we’re more often than not seeing a six on the clock instead of a five (or a four!) when we first hear him through the monitor, but he still likes to throw in an extra-early rising now and again, just to keep us on our toes.
But back to this morning. The sun. It was disorienting, and I had a brief and shining moment during which I thought that Nate was still asleep. I often wake before him at 5:45 or 6:00, and then spend a few minutes trying desperately to get myself back to sleep before I hear his little voice. But awakening before the baby when winter sun is already peeking through the window blinds? That, my friends, is something I could handle.
I turned my head toward my nightstand, where David plugs in the baby monitor when he goes to bed, after I’m already asleep. Usually, it’s bright with tiny lights—the power indicator, plus all of the various “noise indicator lights,” which are perpetually lit on Nate’s monitor from the white noise we run in his room. Today, though, it was all dark. Off. As in, not on. As in, holy heck, my kid could be in there crying right now, and could have been crying for an hour, and I wouldn’t hear him over the white noise running in my own room.
[Sidebar: When Nate was first born, we undertook an experiment in discontinuing the white noise in our bedroom so that we could just hear him from his room and not through the baby monitor. The experiment was an epic failure of sleeplessness (on my part), culminating in advice from another mother that, if your husband is a snorer, just use the dang monitor and run the white noise already.]
I threw a little prayer heavenward as I reached for the power button, holding onto the tiniest glimmer of hope that my earlybird would still be asleep at 7:15 a.m. Alas, it wasn’t to be. His image brightened the screen and I saw him pacing the crib in his fleece sleep sack.
[Have you ever seen a toddler walk in a sleep sack? I mean, one without the foot holes? It’s actually pretty cute and hilarious.]
He wasn’t crying, though, and his face wasn’t puffy or tear-stained when I picked him up. I don’t know whether he had been awake for five minutes or forty-five, although I suspect it wasn’t for too long, as he does tend to get agitated after a little while if no one comes to free him from his crib.
He’s been playing happily since we came downstairs, and now he’s scarfing down apple tea bread like breakfast is his job. I’m still a little freaked out by what-ifs, but clearly he’s no worse for the wear.
I suppose I’ll just be grateful for a good night’s sleep. But I’m still going to ask David about the monitor when he gets up.