It will have fled the border, if it knows what’s good for it.

It’s funny: if you look at the series of events in a certain slant of light, you could almost see how they were entirely my fault. I don’t much care for that slant, so I’m just going to stand a leeetle to the left. Things look less my fault from right there. Still, you can’t get around the fact that I said the words right out loud – like I was a newbie parent who wasn’t aware that saying such things guarantees that you have placed one mother of a jinx right on your silly head. I said them. Out loud. In front of people. Silly me.

I had been conversing with a coworker who has two little girls of his own, although at 3 and 18 months, they are far, far younger than my crowd. We were talking middle-of-the-night wake-up calls and parental duties. From there we sidled into potty-training, particularly night-training. And that, my friends, is when I shot myself in the foot: “Bee still has problems with staying dry all night, and she’s almost six! But I’ve learned that as long as I take her to the potty before I go to bed and whisper our incantation (“Don’t have any accidents – come get Mommy if you need to go potty.”), she’s fine! I have no idea why saying those words to her works – she’s dead asleep – but it does.”

Of course you know what happened.

I took her to the bathroom around 9p.m., propped her up while she did her business, walked my most-sleeping child back to bed and said the magic words. And then Bee woke me up shortly before midnight to say that she had an accident and the only thing that wasn’t wet was her pillow.

But! The fun doesn’t stop there!!

I’m changing Bee’s sheets, having determined that she must have been on crack because only the fitted sheet was wet – the plastic sheet was completely dry, and I’m wrestling with the new fitted sheet trying to get it on when the alarm goes off. Or – some sort of alarm goes off. It’s not quite loud enough to be the house alarm (if yours has ever gone off, you’ll know what I mean) and it was to pattern-y to be a smoke detector. My heart was racing, trying to think things through a little rationally – IN THE MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT – when, miracle of miracles, Gracie wakes up.

Gracie does not wake up for anything. She has slept through tornadoes, fire alarms, every single time I’ve put the light on in her room, being dragged down the hall during a massive thunderstorm because the tornado sirens were going off, her alarm clock,  and all manner of things. But now, whatever this alarm was, had woken her up and turned our confusion into an outright circus. (Polka dots not included.)(Go watch the trailer for Madagascar 3.) Gracie’s asking what’s going on, I’ve narrowed down the source of the alarm to the toy dump wall of buckets and shelves near the end of their bed by the window. Could it be the neighbor’s house alarm? The window was right there. But so were the cables and wires coming into the house. Was that the sound the alarm made when someone cut the wires? “Mom, the clock says 11:58!” Gracie offered. I slapped her alarm off just in case that was what she was trying to tell me. I was too frantic and too what-the-heck-is-going-on to translate Gracie-speak. My frantic was getting worse.


Nope, not my best mothering moment. Butyou play ToyOrBurglar? at midnight and see how you feel.

Two minutes later, the noise suddenly stopped. And inspiration struck. “Gracie, where is your spy watch?” Two minutes after that, Gracie unearthed the demon toy. Her spy watch had been set – for midnight. And then turned on. The damn watch had nearly given me a heart attack.

Gracie was shooed back to bed and I started wrestling with the sheets on Bee’s bed again. Gracie started peppering me with questions about why the watch had a different time set than her alarm clock. And my knee found the wet spot on Bee’s plastic sheet. There was cursing then, but thanks to the bite plate I had forgotten to take out when all of the FUN! started, no one understood a word I was saying. Off came the fitted sheet. A third set of sheets was procured. I wrestled those sheets onto the bed (deargod I hate fitted sheets) and forbade Bee from ever drinking anything ever again. Into bed she went. Annnnnd her comforter was wet. I hurled it into the laundry room with a few more choice words and covered her with new blankets and afghans.

Lights were snapped off.

Alarms were rechecked.

And this poor, tired mama went to bed.

I know I’ll sleep like the dead tonight, and I’ll accept my part of the blame for creating the curse in the first place, but if that watch knows what’s good for it, it will have disappeared from my house by the time I get home. Otherwise I’m writing a post about what great quality it is and how it’s never broken or rundown since we’ve had it. Smart mamas know how to work the juju for evil, after all.



3 Responses to “It will have fled the border, if it knows what’s good for it.”

  1. Kathy Says:

    Oh, I am so sorry. That type of night is no fun at all. It does make me wonder how many nights that watch alarm has gone off and everyone has slept through it. 🙂

    Sleep well tonight my friend. You deserve it.

  2. gayle Says:

    I know much too well about changing sheets in the middle of the night! My daughter always had a very sensitive stomach when she was little, so with her it was throw-up. My youngest son sleeps so deeply that probably up to about age 10 he would pee in his bed if he drank too close to bedtime! Hope the spy watch let you sleep all night last night!

  3. margie Says:

    oh no. hate a night like that.

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