Project Slumber

I often forget that other 10-year-olds think nothing of staying up until 9 or 10 at night and have to be dragged out of bed in the morning, like mini teenagers. For the entire two weeks of Christmas break, my 10-year-old was consistently getting up around 4:45 am.

(In summertime when I complain about the early wakeups, some parents nod knowingly and tell me it’s because of the early morning sun, and that all I need to do is black out his window to make him sleep longer. But it’s pretty freaking dark at 4:45 am in December, and he still wanted to get on with the day. Argh.)

He’s always been an early riser, but that was just crazy — he’d be yawning by 6 pm and could not keep his eyes open past 7:45, even if we were all watching the last few minutes of a tight hockey game. When Justin can’t stay awake for hockey, you know something’s wrong.

So we started Project Slumber to try to adjust his schedule. That meant torturing him in the evenings to keep him awake until at least 8 pm. We made him play games with us, Brayden chased him around a bit, I trimmed his toenails…anything to keep him from falling asleep.

We were completely thrilled when he made it to 5:00 one morning. Sometimes I can’t believe our standards have sunk so low.

Then today we had a major breakthrough: he did not stir until 6:15. I wasn’t sure he was still breathing, but I didn’t dare check on him for fear of ruining this miracle.

When he finally did emerge, he was well rested — but had a nasty-sounding cough.

Those two things couldn’t possibly be related, right?