Monday, September 15, 2008

That Green Surfer Guy We Got At The Nickelcade

Jack has always been a good sleeper until recently. More accurately, he is still a good sleeper, but he is also excellent at waking up at 4 AM and not going back to sleep. When Steve is out of town. Yes, it's painful, but let's save that one for another post.
He has always been great at going to bed. Even before he was a year old he would start crying by about 6:30 PM because he wanted to go to bed, and as soon as we laid him down in his crib he would roll over and we wouldn't hear a peep from him until morning. I give the credit to my sleep bible, but the kid just has a knack for falling and staying asleep. When we first put him into his "big boy bed" we took all the precautions and had bed rails on it and everything, but one night we heard a thud on the monitor and when I went in I found he had fallen out, but hadn't even woken up and was asleep on the floor. Oh, to sleep that well.
But he is not without his rituals. We have the typical bath and stories before bed, but for a long time he would have to have a massive menagerie of animals and toys in his bed with him to go to sleep. There was the stuffed husky dog we got him on vacation in Alaska that he calls "pesky dog", a bear named "popcorn", cars, playmobil pirates, and most importantly "That Green Surfer Guy We Got At The Nickelcade".
The green surfer guy is like the one in the photo but neon green and he got him with some skee ball tickets at the local arcade. Obviously, he is not a surfer, but rather some guy shooting something, but Jack started calling him a surfer guy because the little platform under the guy's feet looked like a surfboard to him. In our old house he would carry that green guy around with him everywhere. Absolutely everywhere. He would take it in the car, take it in the bath, take it to the park and hold it while he was climbing high playground equipment and practically give me a heart attack. And to bed. Since it is just one of those tiny plastic soldier type toys, it was always getting lost but he would not go to bed without it. So each night we would have to go searching our house for this tiny toy that Jack carried with him all day long (so it could be anywhere) or else there would be all kinds of crying and carrying on. Luckily the thing was such a bright green, so you could spot it pretty easily, but of course the night came where we couldn't find it. We tried desperately to appease him with other toys, but he kept telling us to go look for it again, so we did, and finally he fell asleep without it. And a new ritual was born. Each night he would ask again for it, we would look for it, and he would fall asleep in the process. We actually found it at one point and when I gave it to him he looked at me like I had broken some unwritten rule. I wasn't actually supposed to find the green surfer guy, just act like I was looking for it so he could fall asleep. This totally messed him up, so after that night he would ask us to look for it, and we would say we would, and that would be it. He wouldn't even let us say good night to him, we just had to assure him we were looking for the green surfer guy, then we wouldn't hear from him until the morning.
In our move I'm pretty sure the green surfer guy got lost, but the ritual lives on. Whatever gets him through the night, I say. Now we just need to convince him that the green surfer guy wants him to sleep in until 7 AM.