Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Sandra Dodd got me really thinking and being aware about the joy and *shininess* of how we sleep yesterday when I was reading her page about Sleeping. If you haven't read that page, it's a good one.....Last night it was just Emma and Owen and I, Alex was at a friend's house and Kurt was working away from home. At dusk, they wanted to go to a park, so we went to the playground down the street, then they wanted to go swimming, so we ran back home and got our suits and went to the pool. Owen announced on the walk into the pool that he was going to jump off the diving board because he could swim now and he didn't want me to catch him. I got to watch the joy he got from that for about twenty minutes when the pool then closed for lightining, the water was perfect and the sun was down. Then they wanted to go to a store that was open at night.....choices were slim after 9pm around here, so we went to Wal-Mart at about 10pm. There were all these wonderful conversations between the two of them riding there and in the store and on the ride home. They planned what they wanted to do tomorrow. Emma told us some wonderful things about fairies and the stars and dragons. She asked me if I would help her learn to ride her bike on two wheels tomorrow and if we could build Fairy Houses. Owen wanted to make water balloons. When we got home, Daddy was here and they said they wanted to eat some cereal and snuggle with me and the baby. I really don't know when we all went to sleep, but I know it was after 1am....I remember Emma asking me if I was going to sleep in those clothes or, "are you going to get pajamafied?" she said. There was so much sharing and loving and laughing and learning that happened last night in our house after 9pm, and happens many other nights after 9pm or whatever time they might have been coaxed to bed. I have often thought in these hot days of summer, that I might thrive better if I stayed up all "night" and began my day in the afternoon, sometimes it is just too hot to function, let alone let yourself *shine*! After reading that sleeping page and having last night, I was thankful to have found this path of whole life unschooling that gives us these times together no matter what time of day they are--thank you to all the souls out there that led by your example and your sharing. Would Owen have shone on that diving board if he was going to bed at 9pm against his free will? Would Emma have asked me to help her ride her bike on two wheels tomorrow (and she did learn that today!!!! wow!) or would she have been lying lonely in her bed not sleepy at midnight and sad she was alone? I used to have trouble sleeping. I would lie awake even when tired and always needed to do something to go to sleep. I realized last night that most of my troubles sleeping started to shift when our lives shifted to living this way four years ago. Now I can fall asleep anywhere in the house like the sleeping photos from a few days ago. My mind isn't running with all the things I want to do and have to do and need to do and didn't get to do, and should do, etc. Letting go of time and expectations of time-along with many other things- has brought us so much peace! May you all find a time of year no matter what your philosophy of life to step outside the box of "sleep" with either yourself or your kids and see what else sleeping can be......there are too many kids and folks that go to sleep sad or lonely for no reason......I know because there were four years were I was a parent that sleep and going to sleep were something really different in our house than they are now! I'm even more ready for all those folks now that like to ask you when you have a new baby, "How is the baby sleeping?" What a silly question! Is there nothing more wonderful to know or enjoy about a newborn than how they are getting on with their schedule or how they are following the schedule you might give them? And if they are sleeping "well" that somehow makes them a "good" baby?!? We are hoping for another free soul that sleeps when they are tired and shines when they are not.......I like the father that says when asked when his kids go to bed, he replies, "About thirty minutes after they fall asleep." Perfect!
Posted by KT Patrick Bothwell at 2:30 PM