My husband pops out of bed each morning at 5 a.m. and runs. I don’t even try to walk to the bathroom until I’ve checked email on my IPhone and I hear the dude’s alarm go off. His alarm is loud. We bought it for him two years ago when he kept sleeping through the beep each morning. This alarm honks. It flashes red lights, and makes his mattress shake.
He sleeps through it anyway. It irritates me enough, however, to go tell him to wake up. I knock on his door and open it to let the cat in. If the hallway light isn’t enough to rouse him, the cat will head butt him until he surrenders. I check Facebook and a couple of news sites and if he’s still not awake, I go in and nudge him again. Once he’s in the shower, I go back to sleep. It’s a functioning system.
That is, unless my husband gets home from his run before I am awake enough to wake up the dude. If he comes upstairs and the dude isn’t in the shower, he rousts the dude himself.
The dude does not like this.
What he tells me is that my husband opens the door, pulls the covers off and says “Time to get up Champ! The sun is shining, let’s go get ’em Tiger!”
The reality is that my husband basically does exactly what I do–he opens the door, nudges the child and says “Get up.” Unlike me, however, there is no implied message of “Get up already, I want to go back to sleep, so if you miss the bus you’re walking to school.” I guess that qualifies as perky.
I remember feeling the same way at that age. My recollection is that my mom would sing to me and ask me how I was. I started getting up early to avoid it. Telling her that I don’t know the $%^& I am, but I’m not sleeping so probably could be better, would likely get me grounded. I have a feeling, however, that she probably just knocked on the door and said, “Get up.” Like my son, I just remember it differently.
Yesterday was the dude’s last day of school. I did wake him up, but my husband came in from his run just as the child was heading out the door. My husband said a simple “Hey Dude.”
I could hear the dude sigh all the way upstairs. His voice was a flat monotone. “Are the garbage cans still in the garage?”
“Nope,” said my husband. “Garbage doesn’t go out until tomorrow.”
“Oh. Right.” The dude opened the door but my husband stopped him.
“Hey–Have a great day, Champ!” I could hear the fake exuberance in my husband’s voice. I love my husband.
The dude paused. “I’ll forget you said that.”
No he won’t. His father is counting on it.
Words by J. B. Everett
Photograph “Teen Boy” by Husin Sani © 2007 Creative Commons