Back when we decided Finny was big enough to sleep in his big-boy bed, we were absolutely amazed that once he was tucked in for his nap or for the night, he stayed in there and just slept. There were zero attempts at sneaking out of his room, or sleeping in chairs, or on the floor. He loved his bed, and like his mom, he loved his sleep, so it has always been smooth sailing when it comes to bedtime.
Of course, nothing lasts forever...Lately Finny has been keenly interested in finding out what's going on outside his room after he goes to bed.
Visit #1: It started when he simply wasn't sleepy at bedtime, so after about an hour of chatting and singing to himself in bed, he got up to use the bathroom. We heard him shuffling around in the bathroom and decided to see what he would do next. Sure enough, a little blond head appeared behind the door, grinning at us, asking us what we were doing. (We were slumped on the couch watching mindless, TV! What else would we be doing at 9:15pm on a Tuesday?) John got up, escorted Finny back to bed, and chatted with him in the dark while rubbing his little back for awhile. Eventually, Finny fell asleep.
Visit #2: Once again Finny proclaimed he wasn't sleepy, and appeared behind the bathroom door again, gently asking if one of us would rub his back, as he was sure that would help him sleep. I went in, we sang, I rubbed the back, and he went to sleep a little while later.
Visit #3: The next night, John and I went upstairs to play Scrabble while we watched TV, so we turned all the lights out downstairs (except for the nightlight in the hall). We were both expecting our small visitor, and were curious to see if he'd figure out we were upstairs. Answer: Yep! We heard his bedroom door open, his little footfalls on the steps, and saw him peek around our bedroom door. He sauntered in with a casual "What are you guys doing?", checked out what was on TV, and acted as if he might stay awhile! The "back to bed" drill was enacted again.
Visit #4: We thought everything was great--hadn't heard a peep from Finny after he went to bed, so we went upstairs and went to sleep. At some point in the deep dark middle of the night, I awoke to find him standing right in front of my face, waving a Kleenex around, calmly asking for help blowing his nose. A bit freaked out, I complied, and he took himself back to bed. The following day we discussed his ability to blow and wipe off his own nose without having to come all the way upstairs to ask me for help. He replied "I will never ever do that again." I clarified that he should definitely come upstairs if anything was wrong--like he didn't feel good, or was scared, or couldn't sleep, but not just for nose-blowing.
Visit #5: Last night, Finny went to bed on time, we sang our song and turned out the lights. 12 seconds later he appeared in the kitchen to tell me he wasn't tired yet and couldn't sleep. I laughed and said he hadn't even really tried yet, and to please go back in. 15 minutes later when John arrived from picking up grown-up take-out food, out pops Finny, asking for some of Dad-o's trademark "talk a little bit" and backrubbing, which he was confident would help him sleep. That was the last we heard from him.
I wonder what he'll come up with tonight!