crescent moonThere is a series of children’s books out with the title, A Series of Unfortunate Events. I don’t know anything about the books, but I know that the title aptly describes what it’s like to try to motivate around the house quietly while everyone is sleeping. At the best of times, I tend to sleep lightly. Expecting this baby, good sleep is a vague and distant memory. Which leads me to my recent nighttime series of misadventures while the whole world slept.

 It’s midnight. Can’t sleep. I toss and turn, sit up on pillows, decide to have some water.  Bad idea. I reach for the water bottle next to me.  Crash! Over goes a pile of books on my nightstand and the base of the telephone falls to the floor. Tom wakes up, the very thing I was trying to avoid. “Nothing, just my books fell, that’s all,” I whisper. He goes back to sleep. Two hours later the insomnia is getting really old. The brilliant idea strikes me to go sit in my recliner on the other side of the bed by the windows for a little moon watching.

Bad, bad idea. In the seat of the recliner is my laptop which has bright blinking lights on the side. I always turn the laptop sideways in the seat of the recliner at night so the lights are hidden. If I don’t, the entire room lights up with the bright red and white blinking little bulbs. I remove the laptop and immediately see that my shallow-sleeping husband will soon wake up if the lights keep blinking. So I set it on the floor against the wall in an attempt to hide the lights. Now they are actually lighting up the entire wall like a 4th of July display. In frustration, I reach over to unplug the obnoxious thing, thinking that will put the lights out. Ah, but the battery is fully charged! That means the lights stay on.

Next, I decide to try to turn the computer off entirely. An even worse idea. My speakers are turned up on high, so as the computer goes off,  loud, Microsoft music fills the bedroom. Tom stirs. In growing fury, I note that those lights are STILL on!! You apparently can’t kill the beast if you try. I contemplate dropping it out of our second story window, but decide against the move. I’ll just have to go downstairs, I think, and sit in the family room for a while. 

This was the worst idea yet. Still clutching the offending laptop, I get up and promptly stumble on the charger chord I had flung to the floor earlier. Because of this, the small round table by my recliner tips, emptying the entire contents on the floor. The glass I had used earlier in the evening crashes against the wall and all the magazines and various items cascade to the floor. Now Tom is really awake. He turns the light on on his nightstand, blinking in bewilderment, to see his wife standing there clutching her laptop, table contents all over the floor, water from the glass soaking the carpet.

“I’m leaving, really,” I assure him. He doesn’t even bother to ask for an explanation. He’s used to me by now. He switches the light back off, hopeful of some sleep at last. I head downstairs, feeling sorry for myself and sit on the sofa for a while. It seems warm in the room, I think. I crank open one of the windows behind the sofa and enjoy the fresh cool breeze coming in from the large window. Curled up with my face against the cushions, I fall asleep finally…only to be awakened by cold water against my cheek. WATER?! What in the world? It is raining hard outside, and the wind is blowing the rain through the window, into my face and against the back of the sofa. I close the window, too tired to see the humor in this apparent conspiracy to keep me from sleeping.  It’s now 4am and I am frozen from the cold, wet air that had been blowing in on me. 

In desperation, I go back upstairs to my bed and warm up. Ah, wonderful. The next thing I know, sun is streaming in, Tom is gone . I had slept for only a few hours, but they were great. When you have had none, let me tell you, anything is a blessing.

I have to have a new strategy tonight. I think that it should involve doing nothing in the dark except walking out the door and going downstairs. At least if I overturn the fridge downstairs by accident, cause an explosion in the kitchen, or some such disaster, my family upstairs can remain blissfully unaware of it, lost in the wonderful world of sleep.

23 thoughts on “Nightlife

  1. Scott Diekmann says:

    I can totally empathize with this post. I often have to go to work before the rest of the household is even dreaming of arising. There’s nothing more frustrating than fumbling around in the dark trying to be quiet. It just never seems to work. Maybe a pair of night vision goggles would be the answer.

  2. Elizabeth says:

    Oh dear…I can’t help but laugh and empathize at the same time!

    As a light sleeper as well, I really feel for you. It’s so difficult to get tasks accomplished after a night of spotty sleep. Add pregnancy on top of that, oh dear!

    But, one of the side benefits of light sleep comes at that point when you are sooo exhausted, you have a deep and dreamless eight hours straight. Talk about something to rejoice over!

    Another benefit is listening to hubby sleep, deeply breathing and still in his strength. There’s something very nice about that.

  3. Christina says:

    I completely understand with you. Most nights I wake up because of pregnancy back pain or like last night (up 8 times) with our little guy whom I took to the doctor this morning to find out he has a really bad ear infection! Hopefully tonight will be a better night for us both! Its funny because most moms say that they cant wait for the baby to be born so they can get sleep but they forget what it is like waking up with a newborn! 🙂

  4. Socorro Alaniz says:

    Reading this post reminded me of an old “I love Lucy” episode!! It made me laugh so loud, I think I just woke up my husband…. oh dear…..

  5. Peta Slaney says:

    Sorry I had to giggle quite a lot….”been there done that” and laughing all the way…Have done it so often in the dark, now, when I don’t need to be so very quiet anymore, as the brood have all grown up, I do it all the time, in the dark, as I am real good at it, due to all that experience from earlier years….and hate having to switch on the light and get my eyes used to “all that brightness”

    us mom’s truly do understand!

  6. Anjelle says:

    Ingrid this was hilarious!! HAHA sounds really familiar (you know, having one of those days where you do things wrong all the time!)

    Overturn the fridge! HAHAHA!!

    i LOVE your writing style! thanks for sharing! made me smile!


  7. Jessica Fales says:

    Oh Man, Ingrid,
    I cannot wait for my husband to get home! He thinks I am nuts about the computer, router and printer lights in our bedroom. (oops, forgot the blinking baby monitor light) I cover them all up with a blanket or an article of clothing when I go to bed. I call it the runway strip. Planes must have to land there, there are so many!

    Anyway, too funny. I will pray about your own landing strip and sleep.


  8. Carol says:

    Ha, ha! Ingrid, I thought of this as a new “I Love Lucy” episode! (It has been voted the funniest show ever on TV!) This also reminded me of the children’s book, Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day! We all have had times like this! May you not have any more horrible, very bad nights! I remember one night when a friend of mine did not want to disturb her husband as he was watching a ball game in the bedroom so she did not turn on the light and then promptly tripped over something and then her husband had to drive her to the hospital because she had broken her arm! God Bless, Carol

  9. Ingrid Schlueter says:

    So true. Every mom has one of those (or several) memorable days. Once when our daughter Mary was hospitalized for a week with a terrible blood infection from a mosquito bite, Tom was getting the other kids in the van at home to come visit us, and our son Jonathan who has O.I. was hurrying to get in and broke his knee in the process. Tom was downstairs in the emergency room with Jon, I was upstairs with 3-year-old sister who was hooked up to IV, and so Tom and I had to trade places every so often. Yikes.

    Then there was the time Tom’s Mom collapsed from congestive heart failure, son Jon was hospitalized in a different hospital with a terrible femur fracture, and my dad was downstairs from my mother-in-law with a doctor regarding a medical test he had just had. I ran downstairs to check on dad just in time to hear a cancer diagnosis, ran upstairs to check on mom-in-law who was in bad shape, and then back over to son, Jon, who was in traction.

    It was an incredible time. Things never ever come one at a time, do they?! But God somehow gets us through it all.

  10. Socorro Alaniz says:

    Ok, I thought of one of “those nights”….it was pouring… I mean, I do live in San Diego… and pouring may be a bit hyperbole…. granted…it was raining hard…

    My girls were upstairs sleeping and we were training our puppy, Lady Nikomi…. well, I was awaken by this loud clatter and realized that the aluminum doors to our outdoor shed were opening and closing with the wind…

    My concern was that it would wake up our neighbors and the stuff in inside the shed would be ruined….So in a long t-shirt and socks I ventured outside and closed the sliding glass door and went over to close the shed doors….

    Did I mention that the sliding glass door locked when I slammed it shut???

    Did I mention that my husband is deaf in one ear and sleeps on his good ear???

    After about what seemed an eternity of banging on the glass with a decorative rock, I only woke up my dog who was staring at me perplexed at the role reversal.

    Finally, my husband woke up and without skipping a beat, he opened the door and asked if Nikomi had let me out!

    Argggg….then I laughed all the way to the shower to warm up…

  11. Les says:

    Very funny, I have insomnia and I appreciate this so much. Robinson’s Redating the New Testament is a pretty good cure for occasional insomnia, he bores you with facts that ought to dazzle.

    I cut out little squares of black electrical tape to cover up the little lights on my computer, power strips and other devices and I keep a towel over my stereo to block off the blue lights. You might want to try this with your laptop. The tape can easily be peeled off without leaving a residue.

  12. Ingrid Schlueter says:

    Now you made me laugh. Getting locked out is one of the worst things. I did this once in a Navy apartment when my oldest two were little. I actually broke in through a low window, thinking the whole time that I was going to get reported for breaking and entering. My babies were both in the stroller watching mom excitedly. I made it in and no arrest record either. Glad you made it back in!!

  13. Lisa K says:

    I can so identify with this post!! My husband needs to get up around 5 for work and I’m always trying not to wake him, though I’ve had books, glasses of water, etc. fall off the bedside table. He is the type of sleeper that can’t fall back to sleep once awake. Unfortunately I tend to stay up later or wake up in the middle of the night. Many times I’ve wanted to read a book but didn’t want my bedside table light to wake him. The good thing is tv doesn’t bother him if it’s not too loud (he always falls asleep with it on, in fact I don’t think he can fall asleep with it off!).

  14. Mrs. U says:

    I laughed and laughed and laughed as I read this!!! Of course, YOU didn’t find any humor in it as it was happening to you, but you relayed it so well!!!

    Please, Ingrid, WRITE A BOOK!!!! I will definitely be in line to buy it! I LOVE reading all your writings!!

    Mrs. U

  15. Anjelle says:

    I’m curious to know if you overturned the fridge last night! haha. Nah! I’m praying for you sister, hope you get some really good sleep tonight!


  16. Ingrid Schlueter says:

    Hi Anjelle,
    I’m glad to report that I did not have any mishaps with the fridge last night. I’ve been known to get hungry at all hours, but I haven’t actually been hungry enough to SHAKE food out of the fridge yet so all was well. There was this incident, however, while trying locate a bottle of Tylenol in my nightstand drawer. The lid was loose and in the dark, of course, who knew? Do you know what dozens of Tylenol sound like pouring into a wooden drawer in the silence of hte night? But that’s another post… ha!

  17. Anjelle says:

    Haha!! wow!
    Isn’t it awesome how God can make us appreciate the little things and laugh at ourselves sometimes? Does us good! Especially with what’s going on with the church today. I really appreciate your Hope Blog, always makes me smile! And thank you for taking the time to reply to my silly question! haha
    Blessings Blessings Blessings

  18. Carol says:

    Ingrid, I hope that you are sleeping better, even if it means naps during the day. And please do not over do the Tylenol as some people have harmed their liver with it. MSM, a natural mineral which helps with pain and inflammation, found in health food stores has given some people relief. God Bless, Carol

  19. Lisa K says:

    Carol that is VERY interesting about Tylenol. I’m having hernia surgery next week and cannot take common painkillers (like Vicodin) because of side effects. I’ve never had a problem with Tylenol before (it’s probably what they will tell me to take at home after), but now I’m a little wary…

  20. Carol says:

    Lisa, Do some research on natural remedies for pain. It really helps to be an educated consumer nowadays when dealing with any pharmaceuticals, many of which have side effects. God Bless, Carol

  21. Joanna says:

    Mrs. Schlueter-

    I hope you won’t be offended if I tell you how much I enjoyed this post. I laughed out loud, truly!

    There seem to be so many days where nothing goes right, but it seems everybody ELSE’S days DO go right. I guess it was just nice to be reminded that it’s not just me. 🙂

    I’m afraid this isn’t coming out as I wanted it to. The short summary I guess is, thanks for posting this. God has used it to bless me on a day when it was needed. 🙂

    His blessings upon you and your family.

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