i have recently had a self-realization that i am the holder of several conspiracy theories. i never thought of myself as a conspiracy theorist, but recent events have conspired against me to reveal this previously hidden truth. and so, having come to terms with this shady part of my character, i intend to share a few of these very plausible theories, starting today.
conspiracy #1? my kids are determined to keep me from sleeping well.
now listen, i realize that they are all of 4 and a half years old, combined, but i am pretty serious about this one. whether they consciously intend this or are only acting out of pure devilish fallen human instinct is up for some debate. what is not debatable, however, is the outcome: sleep deprivation for daddy.
we all know how this starts. they pop out of their warm fetal-positioned nine-month nap and start screaming immediately. nobody ever asks the obvious question: why couldn't they get all their screaming out in the womb? i mean, if God is omnipotent and all that, couldn't it have been designed this way? prenatal screaming. then, when they emerge from their nearly sound proof gestation, they can be still and know that i am sleeping. seriously, you'd be amazed how much you can learn from listening. infants need to be taught this. before birth.
but this screaming doesn't end in the hospital. like a bad infection, they bring it home with them, and they continue screaming day and night, but mostly night, long into the months ahead. it is, i am convinced, part of the curse of babel, that they can't just speak things like, "dear old dad, might you please fetch my mother? i seem to have had a bit of an unfortunate accident in my pants and i fully realize that you are incapable of dealing with such a disaster, and would appreciate having my maternal caregiver at this time. thank you ever so kindly. why don't you grab yourself a snack on the way?" now that is the way babies were created to be. but something about the curse of adam or original sin or something has distorted the whole thing into an otherwise dignified human being screaming incoherently until his or her head turns bright red and they nearly pass out. again, i point out that this generally occurs at night. it is as if they come straight from the baby factory fully tricked out with a state-of-the-art sleep radar that knows exactly when the most inconvenient time for screaming would be, and then they kick it into high gear. o, sweet sleep, where art thou? not at my house, i can tell you. my 11 and a half-month old (almost one freaking year) kept us up for hours last night with the kind of screaming you would expect to hear if you were standing on top of the gates of hell throwing testamints at the eternally damned. my ears are burning still.
but it doesn't stop there. soon they are much more sophisticated. it is no longer enough to wreak their hellish havoc from the confines of their own bedrooms. they discover that they can get out of their beds and come right up to their completely unsuspecting parents. and they do. they come creeping through the darkness, silent as a ghost, to within inches of your (finally) resting body. but they don't speak. at least not at first. for several moments they just stand there and stare at you, thinking of the most horrifying way possible to wake you. i have studied this carefully and polled several thousand toddlers (well, my one toddler, anyway) and have discovered that their thought process goes something like this:
"hmm. this is perfect. dad looks sound asleep. wait, let me get a little closer just to make sure. yep he sur...holy elmo his breath stinks. how i put up with this sorry excuse for a father i dont' even know. anyway, how should i wake him so as to push him right to the brink of a heart attack, but just this side of a trip to the emergency room? i could start screaming right in his ear. or i could whisper something, like, "i just threw up all over myself," or, "daddy i just peed in my bed." yeah, that should do it.'
do you see what i am saying here? i am sure parents around the globe can relate to this. is this just coincidence? i think not. this is a full-blown conspiracy. and its keeping me up at night.