The One Hundred-and-Fifteenth Chart

January 24, 2014

By Ekta R. Garg

Enjoy these Spurts from the last two weeks, readers!

On school mornings my alarm goes off at 6:30, and I give myself about thirty minutes to wake up, brush my teeth, etc. before going to wake up the kids.  Last week Five woke up in the middle of the night, as she still does sometimes, and came to her father, as she always does, for some comfort.  When I woke up the next morning I thought I heard something and went to check on her.  I found her awake but obviously fighting sleep.

“Are you okay?” I whispered.

“Yes, I’m fine,” she whispered back.  “I’m trying hard to stay awake.”

“You don’t have to stay awake,” I told her.  “You can sleep for about 20 more minutes.”

About an hour later when both kids were wide awake and well into their morning routine of getting ready for school, I asked Five why she had tried to stay awake.

“Because I was trying to think some more,” she said nonchalantly.

I wonder if Einstein had this problem.

***

The girls have recently become fans of the show “My Little Pony” on Netflix.  Seven talks about the show with her friends at school, and they’ve discovered that many of them have watched the same episodes.  Consequently they take what they remember of the episodes and adopt different pony personalities and recreate their favorites on the playground (or in the gym, now that the weather is so painfully cold.)

Seven has decided she’s Rainbow Dash, and one day after school she told me, “In [the show] Rainbow Dash wishes that Skiddley-loo was her little sister.”

“Maybe when you play Rainbow Dash, she can be,” I said, trying to be helpful and encourage her imagination.

She shook her head.  “No, because we always play what’s real in our games.”

Play what’s real.  Right.  That’s why she and her friends pretend to be talking ponies in color combinations painful to the eye.

***

“My Little Pony” dominates many conversations.  One day earlier this week Five said, “I don’t always have dreams when I’m sleeping.”

“I don’t ever have any dreams,” Seven said in contrast.  “I just watch episodes of ‘My Little Pony’ and edit them in my mind and watch them over and over again.”

Someone call Apple.  My child has figured out how to put a TV in her brain.  iMind, anyone?

***

Sometimes with all their bickering and misbehaving, it’s easy to forget just how much the girls care about each other.  Earlier this week the girls went to bed and my husband and I followed our nightly routine of settling into our own room with reruns of “The Big Bang Theory” (our new favorite show) and our laptops, me writing and planning for the blog and him looking at patient files and making notes on the people he’d seen in the clinic that day.

Around 8:30 or so, Five came to our room.  Before I could protest her being out of bed well after bedtime, she said quietly, “I need to go to the bathroom, and I don’t want to disturb Di-Di by going in the kids’ bathroom.  Can I use yours?”

I just nodded and didn’t say anything.  Five went to the bathroom and then went right back to bed without stopping to look at what we were doing or watching.  And I turned to my husband and said, “She’s got such a good heart.”

He nodded and continued checking on the progress of his sicker patients, reiterating for me for probably the hundredth time just where Five gets that caring heart from.

***

Sometimes the kids come into our room because they don’t want to sleep and need an excuse to get out of bed.  Sometimes, as I just shared, they have legitimate reasons.  And sometimes they’ll do something akin to sleepwalking.

On Monday night at 10 p.m. I was the last one awake, as I usually am.  If I’m awake and the light is on, I keep the bedroom door closed so that our light doesn’t stream down the hall and disturb anyone else.  I’ll only turn the light off once I’m done with my work or if I’m ready to read on my Kindle Paperwhite and don’t need my nightstand lamp.

I’d turned off the TV but was finishing up some things on the computer when our bedroom door opened.  Five looked at me sleepily, and for a split second I thought she hadn’t gone to bed yet.  A moment later, after a quick examination of her squinting eyes and slightly dazed look, I realized that she was kind of half asleep.

“What’s wrong, [Five]?” I asked, pushing my lap desk and computer away.

As I stood up she approached me and took a few moments to look around.  I had no idea what she would do or say, and I started to get concerned.  So I asked her again.

Continuing to squint she said, “I’m kind of tired.”

I just managed to keep myself from bursting out into a loud laugh and just said quietly, “Well, then, you should go back to bed.”

I walked her back to her room and made sure to help her snuggle into her blanket before walking away.  She was probably asleep before I made it back to our room, but I managed to hold in my laughter until I got back to my own bed.

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