Thursday, November 08, 2007

What Big Eyes You Have

I put a pillow over my head at 4:00 a.m. when The Rooster was crying and went back to sleep.

[
Because I am a super good mom.]

K, the better parent (and lighter sleeper) did not ignore his wailing daughter.

[Though he wasn't HAPPY about it.]

K got her a juice cup, checked her diaper and rubbed her back, but she kept screaming.

The Rooster shares a bedroom with The Mayor and K worried that one wailing child would soon become two if she woke her brother.

I heard K pull down the attic stairs, scramble up, retrieve the pack-n-play, set it up in my office and move The Rooster there.

[Then I pressed my pillow down more tightly on my head because, damn, he was making a lot of noise!]

In the morning The Rooster said,


"Mama, do you remember running with that Daddy Wolf?"

I struggled to determine what story book she might be talking about, but despite my probing questions she kept insisting on her memory of the two of us running with a wolf.

"Did you dream that we were running with a wolf when you were sleeping last night, Roo? Did it scare you and wake you up?"

"I did!" she said.

It was the first time either of my children were able to relay the contents of a nightmare to me.

"Who ran the fastest?" I asked.

"The wolf!" she told me.

[Too much Little Red Riding Hood maybe?!!]

"Did he gobble us up, Roo?"

"I don't know," she said.

She must have woken up right when the wolf caught up with her.

I thought about how frightening a full grown dream wolf would have been to her.

She must have known she could never out run him.

She must have felt so little.

It reminded me of the only time I have seen a wolf in the wild.

K and I were hiking in the woods in the Hudson River Valley just after a big snow.

The snow drifted
up to our calves and sat in great heaps on the ice-covered branches of the hardwood trees.

The snow's depth muffled all the sounds of the world, leaving only a deep, peaceful silence.

Sensing motion behind us, K and I turned wordlessly to see a full grown wolf running through the forest.

He was far enough away not to frighten us, but close enough that we could see him well.

His fur was silvery colored.

He loped through the trees with such speed and power that it took our breath away.


61 comments:

Family Adventure said...

Oooh..poor thing! She must have been so scared. Time for a new good night story?

Heidi Hyde said...

Poor baby! That would have scared me too!

-hh

Colleen said...

My 2-year-old did something similar last night but she screamed, "Daddy! Daddy!" so I felt totally justified in pretending to be sound asleep when my husband leapt out of bed. This morning when I asked her if she'd had a nightmare last night she told me, "Yeah, mommy. Shoes were tickling my armpits." Talk about scary stuff! :)

Steph said...

How scary! And you seeing a wolf, how cool...gave me goosebumps!

acumamakiki said...

i loved this story.

JoeinVegas said...

To be small and consumed by a dream - I have some now that are hard to deal with, imagine being that size, probably not knowing the difference between a dream and reality.

Victoria said...

Aw - poor sweetness! My Girl often has bad dreams, and wakes and remembers.

Lovely story about the real wolf.

furiousBall said...

Ahh, poor Roo. Kudos to K for getting up, I've been there and want to go back. Not the nightmares, just the help.

WILLIAM said...

You were running with the Daddy wolf? Hmmm?

Melissa Garrett said...

Oh, my heart breaks!!

For my two oldest kids, nightmares are all about bears.

The Sour Kraut said...

The poor thing. Nothing bring out my nurturing instinct as much as kids frightened at night.

Taste Like Crazy said...

A full grown dream wolf would scare me too!

Lori at Spinning Yellow said...

Your wolf spotting gave me goosebumps too. Nightmares are sooo scary, poor Rooster!

Redneck Mommy said...

Funny, my kids have had the same nightmares...

Of course, we live in an area that wolves roam freely and it is not odd to see one in the yard or in a field.

Perhaps I ought to stop teasing them about being wolf bait when I make them go get fire wood out in the dark, eh?

meno said...

At her age, i was not always able to tell the difference between a dream and reality.

I am an expert at feigning sleep. Even through the sound of a puking cat.

QT said...

What a great story - we think we are so evolved, but hidden deep in our brain there are still images that will cause a bit of adrenaline to course through our veins - wolves definitely qualify.

Jessica @ A Bushel and a Peck said...

My daughter has been scared to go to bed all week because we just discovered last night that she's afraid of dragons. So random, I have no idea where it came from, but I feel bad thinking of her scared and tiny in her room alone. We've had to sit next to her at bedtime until she falls asleep.

Julie Pippert said...

2 is when my kids started telling me they dreamed. It really frightened them, either way. It seemed real to them, I think. Boy did I have to get creative to handle that one.

Poor Roo.

And your description of the real wolf..neat.

Julie
Using My Words

3carnations said...

Oh! My son hasn't yet relayed a bad dream to us, either. Or maybe, I can hope, he has never had a bad dream. :)

Schmutzie said...

I remember when I had my first nightmare that I recounted in the morning, and it was terrifying, especially when the lines between waking reality and dreaming aren't quite defined yet. Poor girl. I would not suggest "Peter and the Wolf" as follow-up bedtime reading.

Patience said...

Little kid's dreams are oh so scary! And real!!

motherbumper said...

Two magical moments captured perfectly. The dream must have been scary but the remembering is so special. And to see a wolf in the wild .... absolutely mind blowing.

I had a coyote family take over my campsite one night and I was lucky enough to watch from the safety of our tent. They were just curious about our stuff (there was no food for them... everything was safe up in the trees yards and yards away) - I got to snap one photo at daybreak and when I took it to be developed everyone marvelled at how lucky we were to have that experience.

Done hijacking the comments.

Marmite Breath said...

Tom had a nightmare last night too, but I don't think it was as scary as Roo's. It involved some sort of monster, but Tom was grinning as he told me about it, so I don't think it was a nighmare as much as it was just very vivid.

cronznet said...

I hope talking with her about her dream reduced her anxiety like it does for us big folks.
Meeting a wolf is always a memorable experience. I have never again thought a husky or any other breed looks at all like the feral being that is a wolf.

Diane said...

Oooo, a wolf dream! I vividly remember a nightmare from my early childhood. The Jolly Green Giant came and picked me up, which I did NOT like. There were lions in there too, but no wolves.

And seeing a wolf in the wild? Oh, I'd love to see that too - from a distance!

SouthernBell said...

How old is Roo? I would like to know at what age Cora will be able to tell me about her dreams. She wakes up crying from them, but I don't know if she understands they are dreams.

megachick said...

i suggest something as simple as getting a 'guardian' figure in the room. maybe a shepherd who's experienced with wolves.

unfortunately, pooka also had night terrors and there is no way we've found to combat them. when she finally wakes up she doesn't even remember what happened.

ps. word verification is zdobaty. i'm pretty sure that's polish for nightmare. heh.

~JJ! said...

Oh Baby Roo.

I would have been scared too.

Beck said...

Poor little girl...
In the winter, where I grew up, I could look out my bedroom window at night and see wolves running quietly through the farm yard. Creepy.

jen said...

poor Roo. M's been having some similar nightmares lately, and the associated parental waking has been ensuing.

Mac and Cheese said...

Awww, that must have been scary. I'm starting to think that my two-year old is starting to wake up from scary dreams, but she can't articulate them so she just screams for random items in her room to hold on to.

Virtualsprite said...

Goober does that, too... he remembers everything and is just now learning to tell the difference between real and dream.

We just had a wolf take down a deer in our yard. We knew we had coyotes, but the wolf was new. Nature Boy found the deer in the woods the other day and it's made us think twice about going for walks at night.

mauniejames3 said...

poor little lovey....it's too bad we don't have the ability to wipe all the scary things from their minds...but hopefully tonight, after you read a happy story her dreams will be sweeter...


mauniejames

Heather, Queen of Shake-Shake said...

You have the neatest stories of trips with K.

Wolves are really neat and cool animals.

But I admit, scary in a dream.

BOSSY said...

... And the chorus goes "Poor Baby". Exactly what Bossy was going to say.

Jennifer said...

I had "wolf" dreams (nightmares) frequently as a child. Tell Roo to give me a call and we'll chat.

As always, Jess, you make me laugh out loud and then sigh with the beauty of the way you see the world. Thank you.

Jean-Luc Picard said...

Little Red Riding Hood didn't have a chance.

kittenpie said...

pumpkinpie has told me about two or three dreams. The first was about a bumblebee. But a few weeks ago, she dreamt that a mountain tumbled down onto her crib. Scary.

Mimi aka pz5wjj said...

Poor thing! I think I would have been scared too!

Misty Dawn said...

My dad owns a wolfdog (he's my boyfriend). He looks like a wolf, is as big as a wolf, but is the most loving big baby ever!

Worker Mommy said...

Aww, poor Rooster. Here's to hoping she doesn't have anymore nightmares anytime soon.

Veronica said...

Poor Roo! On another note, I wish my hubby was the lighter sleeper, rather than him being able to sleep through a 2am screaming fit.

Mrs. Chicken said...

Poor wee lass! My Poo has terrible, vivid nightmares. Usually about other children, fighting with her or chasing her. I wish I knew what precipitated that for her.

dawn224 said...

my bed would have been wet if I'd had that dream....

carrie said...

At least she could tell you about it! That's huge in our house . . . well, that and me putting the pillow on my face and mumbling a few choice words before retrieving a little girl.

Queen Karana said...

I hate knowing what bad dreams my children have... however, it is always worse when they can't tell you what it was about - because it's only that much harder to 'make it better.'

*~*Cece*~* said...

Now don't you feel bad for not getting up and saving her?! lol

Moobs said...

Poor Rooster.

I remmber seeing pictures of wolves in National Geographic as I was growing up. They looked dogs and I coud not understand why they had had such a bad press historically.

Years later, whilst on holiday, I heard wolves howling and something deep down in my genes switched on and I found my heart racing with fear.

Christina said...

Poor sweet thing!

Nightmares are the worst for littles.

Above Average Joe said...

At least you didnt have "leg spasms" and repeatedly kick K until he woke up and went to check on Rooster.

liv said...

okay, I had something to say before I spit out my wine reading what Above Average Joe had to say!

Janet said...

My 21-month-old often wakes up from her nap saying, "Cary Guy!" (which means Scary Guy). It's because of this life-sized ghoulish robotic butler they had set up at the drug store near us for a month before Hallowe'en.

It's fascinating what stays with them.

Sarcastic Mom (aka Lotus) said...

Moments like that are pure magic. A gift.

flutter said...

Oh baby girl.

JCK said...

You are totally lucky that your K gets up and comforts the dream ravaged children. My husband uses the "because I sleep naked" excuse to avoid stepping out onto the cold, cold floor and sit in a cold room perched on our son's bed.

Your real wolf sighting sounds amazing.

Stepping Over the Junk said...

wow. my kids have never relayed nightmares to me...that is pretty profound! I think the only thing that comes close is my older daughter, when she was about 4, waking up screaming "Camel cow!" Some sort of camel-cow creature was in her dream and freaking her out.

sweetney said...

beautifully put.

Jenifer said...

My girls have only been able to tell me once or twice that it was a bad dream that woke them up.

I hope Roo has sweet dreams tonight.

Lawyer Mama said...

Poor thing. Hollis has been having a lot of dreams about snakes lately.

mamatulip said...

Poor little Roo...although it's nice when they hit the point in childhood where they can actually sort of relay their nightmares to us.

I've never seen a wolf up close, but I've heard them howling and braying in the distance. Eerie, yet beautiful.

Jo Beaufoix said...

Miss M has done this a few times now. We have had spiders, cwocadiles and Granny eating monsters. I love it. I imagine her and Roo are similar ages. M will be three at tthen end of January. It's all going too fast. Big sighhhhh.