night terrors

I’m tired today. Mostly because Saturday night I stayed up late working on my Sunday message. But also because last night our oldest had one of the most intense night terrors we’ve ever experienced. She’s always been prone to sort of lucid dreams, where she’s suggestible and you can talk with her while she’s asleep. But last night was different.

I was awakened at half past eleven, just as I had drifted off (I hate that) with a very loud “Daddy!” coming from our kids room. I bolted up, and went in to see what was the matter. The Linguist is tossing and turning, saying, “No! Daddy! It’s not right!” and things like that, in between crying. They say when a child is having a night terror that you shouldn’t try to wake them. But I forgot that, and I tried to talk to her, at one point even sitting her up to try to rouse her, which only got me into more trouble. She began to push and punch, and kick. Yeah, it was fun. All while screaming at me. In her sleep.

Worried that she’s woken her sister up, I looked over to see the Comic sleeping away, ignoring the whole thing. Not for long. By the end of the whole episode (which lasted an hour) she had gone to our room to sleep. Smart girl. ๐Ÿ™‚

I tried to cut my losses and I gave up trying to comfort the Linguist since nothing I was doing seemed to be helping, so I informed her I was leaving, and went back to my room. “Go!” she screamed at me, as I walked down the hallway.

Of course, my DW was completely awake by this point, having heard all of what my daughter had been screaming. She was justifiably shaken and concerned. It’s the middle of the night, I wasn’t thinking clearly, and my daughter is just short of screaming obscenities at me, if she knew any of those words.

She was still sobbing/crying as I lay there, trying to think of what to do. Suddenly she yelled, “This doesn’t change anything, I’m still mad at you!” I sank lower under my covers, and my heart did the same.

A few minutes later, she was still sobbing, but not screaming anything, and I ventured back. I had to do something. She’s mad at me for something I’ve done, so I guess the best thing to do is to own up to my wrongdoing and apologize. “I’m sorry. Daddy’s sorry. I love you. I love you” is what I ended up saying, over and over. I started patting her back. When the Linguist was a baby, I would always say “I know, I know” as I rocked her and patted her, so I thought perhaps this might calm her, or reach her somewhere at a deeper level.

She began to settle down, and reached for a Kleenex to blow her nose. When she started complaining about her nose, I knew she had come out of the dream. I helped her with the Kleenex, and then she looked at me. I gave her a kiss and a hug, and she said, “Mommy…”

I went and got her what she wanted. Can’t argue with that. She was finally settled, at 12:35AM.

In the morning, when the Linguist woke up, I asked her if she remembered having a bad dream. She nodded, and I asked her if she was still mad at daddy.

She looked at me, and said, “No, that was a long time ago, and besides, since then, I got another writer!”

“Oh,” I said, “you got another writer? What did they write?”

“It was lines, and then wavy lines, and then some different shapes in between. I was mad at you because you didn’t do it right, and then you refused to write any more!” she said.

“Oh dear,” I said, “I’m sorry.”

“It’s ok, it was just a dream!” she said.

I think it’s a sign. She’s going to grow up and be an editor.

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2 responses to this post.

  1. sad, sweet, and funny all at the same time!


  2. Posted by Andrea on 2007/11/16 at 7:29 PM

    aww…euge, love the ending. You’re so right. I can see it now. She’s going to be fiesty, that one. ๐Ÿ™‚


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