For the umpteenth time in 3 weeks, I came home late, but just in time to catch the kids in bed seconds before they drifted off to sleepy land.
As I crept in quietly into Squirt’s room to say good night one evening, I noticed that Squirt was just about to drift off as I advanced towards him. I looked at him, stroked his head and murmured a soft goodnight. He immediately lighted up, almost sprung up on me and started to jabber away incoherently. He was so happy to chat.
While I felt a little guilty that I had woken him up, I was just as happy to indulge him. I sat next to him and started to stroke his cheeks gently – a discovery I made when he was a baby to make him literally go limp! He loves being stroked on the cheeks and on his forehead, and usually it is a sure fire way to get him drift off to sleep quite quickly.
Squirt has also recently cultivated a habit where he would complain of “itchy” or “pain” on mostly his feet and he would subsequently pull my hand towards where he would want me to soothe his “itch” or “pain”. If I stop, he will get annoyed. He would automatically “command” me to continue by putting his hands on my hand and direct it towards the very spot again for as many times as it takes.
When I thought he (or me for that matter) has had enough, I kissed him goodnight and left. He would usually be OK with it, but that evening, he cried his guts out, wailing hysterically and going “Mama! Mama!” It has been days since I saw him at bedtime, and I felt a little gutted.
At the same time, that feeling of being so wanted and needed by a child (something which I don’t get very much of with Spud when she was younger) is incredibly priceless!