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    The Somnambulistic Son

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    The silence in the room was broken as a cry drifted down the stairs. Joe, an unassuming man who is convinced that Murphy's Law applies to his everyday life, turned to look at Sarah.

    As a stay-at-home mom, Sarah has developed an expertise in all things baby. On more than one occasion, Joe has found himself wondering if Sarah has some type of supernatural connection with the baby. He's attempted to rationalize these thoughts. He knows that Sarah's hearing is better than his. But how can she be in the kitchen, chopping up food, with a fan turned on and music playing in the background and STILL know when Tyler wakes up? And let's be honest, Joe. Doesn't Tyler always seem to know when Sarah's nearby, almost like he senses it? It's a two-way bond, between mother and son, and you aren't a member of that club, Joe.

    Tyler is the seven month old product of the the young marriage between Sarah and Joe. If you were to see his smile, you would see the sproutings of three teeth, with two more, maybe three, on the way. Tyler is also the owner of the cry that has Joe sitting up and looking questioningly to Sarah.

    Sarah was gazing upward, head cocked ever so slightly to the right. Joe was certain that she was focusing her auditory senses on the room above, but that small, nagging part of his head thought otherwise. She's looking through the floor, Joe. She's watching Tyler THROUGH the twelve inches of plaster, wiring, joists, sub-flooring and carpet. And matting, Joe. She's also looking through the matting.

    In the silence that followed the initial cry, she said, "Maybe he'll go back to sleep."

    Joe relaxed and let out the breath he didn't notice he was holding. Yes, maybe he would go back to sleep. It was eleven o'clock POST meridiem, after all.

    The answer to that particular thought came down the stairs in a more forceful tone than the cry that first interrupted the quiet evening. With a sigh, Joe stood up, walked to the stairs, and started up the fourteen steps to Tyler's room, stepping over the three creaky ones. It was a habit he picked up shortly after Tyler was born. In the darkness of the second floor, he turned the doorknob and pushed the door open. They live in an old house that has settled over the years. Joe has combatted the non-levelness of the house by placing shims under one or more corners of the furniture. The door to Tyler's room also falls victim to this non-level nature and will swing open without any external force. It stops only upon hitting the doorstop with a BANG....... BANg.... BAng... Bang.. bang bangbangbangbang, as it bounces off the stop with decreasing force each time it connects. Only a week ago did Joe have what he considers to be the brainstorm idea of placing one of Tyler's stuffed toys against the doorstop. Now, the only sound from the door is a quiet "ffff".

    Tyler was in his crib, sitting, crying. Joe could just barely make out the shape of the pacifier in the darkness. It was laying on the floor, about a foot or so from the crib.

    "Big surprise", Joe said under his breath as he bent to pick it up. He mused on whether this small piece of plastic and silicone was the source or the cure for the Tyler storms that have a tendency to materialize seemingly out of nothingness.

    "Here you go, buddy. Shh shh shh shhhh. Let's go back to our night nights." More times than not, night nights comes out as "nigh nighs", and this was no exception.

    With his eyes now adjusted to the darkness, Joe got a better look at Tyler and saw that, sitting in his crib and crying, his eyes were still closed. He asked in barely a whisper, "Are you still sleeping, TyTy?" In fact, the whisper was so faint that Joe would later wonder if he even said it aloud at all. He picked Tyler up an inch so he could lay him down again. Tyler's eyes never opened. They never even fluttered. Convinced more than before that Tyler was indeed still asleep, Joe placed the pacifier in Tyler's mouth. Instantly, Tyler fell still and silent.

    Shutting the door and walking down the stairs, a swarm of thoughts flooded Joe's head. Sarah looked at him, waiting for a status update, and although Joe was certain that she watched the entire scene unfold through the ceiling/floor combo that seperated the two rooms, he said "That boy is going to be a sleepwalker."

    The End

    somnambulistic (som-nahm-byoo-lis-tic): a parasomnia or sleep disorder where the sufferer engages in activities that are normally associated with wakefulness while he or she is asleep or in a sleep-like state.


    A Free Man said...

    Well written Joe! They've got a stronger bond to their mother at this age, but that'll change.

    Erin & The Boys said...

    Cute post! That will be crazy if Tyler really does end up being a sleepwalker. Lee did that all the time when he was growing up and freaked his parents out. He would be standing at the foot of their bed... still asleep!

    Cat said...

    My husband called it Mommy Radar, when I would actually wake up a few seconds before they actually start crying. The is a special bond between a mom and her baby, but dads can have it, too. It's just different.

    Ryan Ashley Scott said...

    Sweet. He'll figure out soon enough that he wants to be just like you. :) Congrats on being featured on Intrepid Tuesday.

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