So, I am having a rather disturbing dream where an army of Ankylosaurus (Ankylosauruses? Ankylosauri? Come on, English Majors; blow the dust of those degrees and help me out!) apparently think I am a gourd and are chasing me down a wooded glen in a game of D-ball. The Point-of-Fact guy is riding Hank the Ankylosaurus, holding onto his jaunty hat with one hand and waving frantically at me with the other, while shouting at me that Ankylosauri (I'm going with it. ) are herbivores and that I shouldn't worry. I totally start to worry when one of them begins nibbling at my hand like it is a tasty bush. I blink awake, in that combo terror/relief that accompanies bad dream wake-ups; I am literally half-off the side of the bed, my arm trailing on the floor, a hungry Super Cat licking my fingers. Finding this slightly more disturbing than the dream, I jerk my hand away and flip over; to be confronted by something decidedly more disturbing that both dream and a flesh-desirous cat. I find myself staring into the cold dead eye sticker of RoGun, who is tucking into Super Toddler's arms, as if he were an adorable kitten. After my initial impulse to hurl him from my son passes, I find myself grateful that at least Super Toddler transformed him out of gun-mode before he decided to cuddle him. With no interest in going back to sleep and being trampled by jock dinosaurs, I dispassionately survey the bed.
It resembles a sardine can. Super Toddler, RoGun, and I are cuddled in on the far right side, heads on a pillow. Baby Elmo, a Reindeer, and Awkward Dad are huddled toward the left side, bodies completely turned around, Awkward Dad's feet on his pillow and his arm draped over the end of the bed, where Super Cat is nudging it urgently. Super Cat 2 (the non-human-flesh-eating one) is sleeping in the deep center of the bed, spooning Super Preschooler and snoring. Super Preschooler is hugging a stuffed Zebra, and 8-foot-long Arcade Snake is in a perfect diagonal, his head and tail connecting my feet with Awkward Dad's feet in a grand circle of life, or at least a ridiculously crowded bed. The only one not here is Super Baby, who I can hear playing with these guys, who have little bells in them that are softly tinkling in harmony with her gleeful baby coos. I have an intense longing to crawl into her crib and go back to sleep.
That longing is quashed when Super Toddler jerks in a particularly active dream and sends RoGun slamming into my left eye. I kick Arcade Snake, which begins the game of Mouse-Trap; he vibrates past Super Cat, who merely yawns, which shifts Super Preschooler, which sends stuffed Zebra flying into Awkward Dad's face, which causes him to jerk his arm, which startles Super Cat into sinking his teeth into it, which causes an earthquake about an 8.6 on the Rictor scale as Awkward Dad awakens with all the grace of Samson tearing down a pagan temple. Next door, Super Baby hurls a roly-poly friend out of her crib with a roar not unlike her father's, RoGun slams into my face again, and I long to return to the Ankylosauruses (grammar variety, Readers; try it). I am despairing about this day already, when Super Preschooler slowly rises from his central nest, as lovely as a Buzz-Lightyear-pajama clad Venus emerging from the waves. He smiles radiantly in the weak morning sun and turns his beatific face to mine, hair haloing him like a vision. He picks his way through the Mouse-Trap wreckage, finds a way to squeeze into the microscopic space to my right, and settles into that child-sized space under my arm like he was born to fit there, which he was. He sleepily smiles at me and whispers, "Good morning, Mommy." Good indeed.
We may be losing some battles, but we are winning the war, Readers. Make sure to buy your war bonds to support the cause. What? Everyone loves World War II references, right? Oh, just Awkward Grandpa...OK, well then, go buy some chocolate to support Awkward Mom's sanity. Do your part on the home front, Readers!
Good morning or not,
Winning the war or not,
RoGun is still giving me the creeps.