The obscurity of this night is striking, and I quickly make my way towards the bed where my husband lies restfully. I am very much looking forward to sleep this night.
My eyes are drooping and I can feel myself moving towards that place of half sleep where the conscious mind no longer rules, and dreams will soon take over.
I am jolted upright right when I hear a cry for ‘Mama’ from the next room. I don’t really want to get up, I don’t really think it is necessary at this time. More than likely the child is just having a bad dream, it will pass.
Again the cry tickles my ear.
I quickly stomp my way towards the bedroom of the boy. Light steps evade me at this moment.
In the dim light of which my eyes have finally adjusted to, the child looks as though he sleeps soundly. A quick thought of ghostly sounds flits through my mind. I quickly push it away because this is neither the time nor place to be thinking such thoughts.
I am hovering over him. Looking at my sweet boy, his face is towards the wall but I still revel in his exquisiteness.
Despite my fatigue I stand there watching him. So virtuous.
Everything is calm; all is well.
BAM!! The child swiftly jolts his head around to face me not a single body part moved…Exorcist style, and with his eyes wide open he says in a raspy, creepily slow kind of way, “I… love… you… Mamaaaa.”
Really emphasizing the Mama part and dragging it on for much longer than necessary.
I pee just a little bit in my blue plaid pajama pants.
It happened and I am not proud of it. But none the less it did happen and I am feeling discomfited.
He continues to gaze at me with this far away dazed look. Again he says, “I loooove you Mamaaaa…” trailing off on the Mama part this time.
I want to say it back but I am thinking about a million things at this moment. Well actually only two prominent things.
1. I have got to get these pants off, the pee that is dripping down my leg is going to start chaffing soon.
2. I am so scared right now….
The 5 year old now wears a smile across his face, but it is not his usual happy-go-lucky kind of grin he sports so often. No it is the kind that is closed and wide, as if he doesn’t really want to smile but is anyways.
And he stares at me, like he is looking right through me.
The kids body is still faced towards the wall but his head is awkwardly situated towards me. Oh how it makes this scene so much more daunting. I realize I can`t just continue to stand here frozen out of fear and a distinct feeling of weirdness…due to several contributing factors. So I move towards him. Slowly, sure footedly.
He. Starts. Laughing.
Intense shutters of horror consume me. He lies there laughing, an animalistic kind of laugh, the kind that wouldn`t be normal in the light of day, never mind at this time of night.
Again I freeze. What do I do now!? This is possibly the worst kind of motherly situation I have been faced with thus far. I am on the verge of panicky tears, as he cackles his sardonic chortle in my general direction.
I do what any person in this situation would do. I make a run for it. But before that, I quickly take two steps towards him, give him a distant kiss as I am kind of freighted to get too close to the kid, and tell him I love him too.
Maybe it was the wrong thing to do. Maybe I should have stayed and comforted him until he fell back into a deep dreamless sleep. But maybe, just maybe I was spot on in my decision to get the heck out of dodge.
Hours and several bizarre dreams later, I find Lars cuddled close to me in my bed. I will admit I jump out of my skin a little from the thoughts of my last encounter with this eldest child of mine. But now as he sleeps beside me, he is again just an angelic babe, wanting his Mama.
I settle in beside him, and am happy to fall back asleep with the child’s cuddly body close to mine.
It was then that I hear the rumbling of laughter rise up within him.
“Mamaaaaa, I loveeee you…”
So much for sleep tonight.
Lindsay Brown is a Sylvan Lake mother of two and freelance columnist.