Monday, April 19, 2010


With my first baby, I was frantic that with my hearing loss, I would not hear her if she cried out in the night.

But, of course, mother instinct is louder (and much more persistent) than any auditory receptor.

It still works, even when across oceans and lands and seas (with the image of the American flag being raised, dramatic music for the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and the Boston Pops Symphony in the background, as the camera slowly pans over to... wait, that image is just in my head... right?).

Okay, back to the subject.

As my kids have flown the coop, left the nest, grown up and scattered, etc. etc. etc., my husband claims that I completely avoided any sense of loss by simply getting more animals to take their place.

And my ultimate child-substitute is Murray (he's the slightly larger one on the couch to the left).

Murray sleeps on a bed next to mine (and a real bed, not a dog-bed), and waits patiently every night for me to go to sleep before he goes to sleep.

And I have a serious time-line I must follow each and every night before I get to sleep...

Unfortunately, the last one is the most important if I am actually going to go to sleep - by the end of 15 minutes after taking my nightly Ambien CR, I must be relaxed, under the covers, and mentally going through the plot and script lines from a favorite movie of mine (Jane Eyre, Princess Bride, Dave, or Serenity)... which almost always allows me to sleep into sleep.
But last night... well, my child was in need.

Murray, right at the 15 minute mark, suddenly began a coughing, sneezing almost seizure fit. Immediately my brain began churning out how to possibly do CPR on a dog - what emergency treatment would be open at 12:32 a.m. - and would there be any possible ill-effect from doing mouth-to-mouth with a canine?

He got over it fine on his own, but not before all my mom-instincts had gone on red-alert.

And my carefully balanced bedtime routine was totally and completely screwed.

It is amazing the things that can be accomplished at 4:26 a.m. - my closet got cleaned, all sorts of loose papers got filed, and my on-again, off-again internet connection was uninstalled, reinstalled, uninstalled again and finally each and every plug and connector to my CPU were un-and-re-plugged.

I sure hope I sleep tonight - and if not, I am fully prepared to administer any or all resuscitation methods necessary.
Just with a bottle of Listerine right by my bedside.