I've always loved the Quiet of the Night. When I was a teenager, I used to stay up late on Summer Nights reading well past midnight in the cozy cocoon of my basement bedroom. Other nights I'd stay up late sewing, with the television a low hum in the background while my parents, brother and sister slept upstairs. Now that I live in A House Filled With Boys, Surround Sound is the Status Quo – regardless of whether or not the television is turned on at the time. The sound of voices, footsteps, thumping balls, cartoons, blaster fire, video games, joke telling, violin practice and yes, bickering too, fills my household. Sometimes these sounds are overlapping since there is the one I married plus the two smaller ones we made together. It's only in the early morning when I wake up before them, and after they go to bed at night, that I can actually hear the clock ticking in the family room, or the chimes ringing outside the sliding glass doors as the wind catches them just so.
My family tucked in early tonight. I stayed awake tap, tap, tapping on my laptop keyboard. Yet another sound in the room along with the ticking clock. Then my eyelids began to droop. I must have dozed off because quite a bit of time had passed when I opened them all of a sudden to see that my laptop battery was red – signaling time to get plugged in for a recharge. The same was true for me. Better go to bed since it was 2:00am. How could THAT be?! I finished with the windows that were open on my screen and headed upstairs to bed. But my mind was whirring. Words were swirling. Ideas for blog posts kept popping into my head. After 30 minutes of sleep not coming I remembered the laundry I hadn't moved around since tucking my boys in bed. I crept out of bed and did just that. Then laid back down. Quiet as could be. Couldn't sleep. Feeling kind of hungry.
My Night Shift Husband had the alarm set for 3:00am already. Turns out, I could have been his alarm clock. Since he knew I was awake, even as I tried to Play Possum, he asked me, "Why do you wake up at 3:00am to do laundry?" In the dark I replied, "Because I fell asleep on the couch earlier and now I can't sleep." Then after a brief pause, where I knew he was shaking his head in exasperated disbelief, I added, "Plus, power is cheaper at 3:00am. I'm economizing." The sound of the dryer spinning in the background is a soothing sound. I love those machines that help get the work done around here.
While he showered before heading in to work, I gave in to the hunger and headed to the kitchen for a bowl of Cheerios. The cat hopped up on the table to try to help me eat them but was quickly shooed to a nearby chair instead. Loaded the dishwasher after that. Then, once he left for work, and since I was awake, ready to revel in the Quiet of the House just a little longer, I logged back on. The tired will catch up with me later. It always does. That's what naps are for. The Man knows me well though. He set the bedroom alarm clock for 6:45am before he left. Just to make sure I'd be up in time to round our rambunctious boys up and at 'em for school in a few hours time. Better go lay my head on the pillow once more for a quick cat nap before morning officially comes with the sunrise.