Stay-at-Home Nerd: SaHN Endorses This Sleep-Aid
a blogumn by Josh Pullin
Since the most valuable commodity to any new parent is sleep, it should come as no surprise that the first item I endorse is a sleep aid. Even though ten hours of uninterrupted shut-eye is the dream, you might still be getting up twice a night as a new parent. Five months in and we wake at one and five AM to feed and change. As much as I would like to knock back two Tylenol PM’s and call it a day, I’m afraid checking out for that long is just not an option.
Also out are getting my own place and hiring a nanny. I saw The Hand that Rocks the Cradle and, frankly, nannies scare me. One woman I know watched in horror as her baby rolled off the changing table and onto the floor. (Don’t worry. She bounced.) When she told the nanny about it the following day, the nanny said, “Oh, she’s been rolling over for days!” Would be nice if the nanny filled in the parents on baby’s new behaviors. Besides, the whole point of being a stay-at-home dad is to spend this time with my kid.
I fondly remember the amount of sleep having my own place afforded. However, any time I pass a “For Rent” sign in front of an apartment building in my neighborhood I get a queasy feeling. In the abstract it’s fun to imagine a place where I can go and sleep for days on end with nobody looking to me for food, or comfort, or playtime, or bathing — and, that’s just my wife. Add a kid in there and you see where I’m coming from.
The truth of the matter is getting my own place would involve dealing with an apartment manager showing. It would include a lonely walk up the stairs and a depressing look at the crummy pool. I’d ask if they have a washer and dryer and they’d say no. Does it include parking? For a fee. Credit Checks, security deposits, shite dishwashers and neighbors who don’t give a damn. Not to mention ant problems, leaky faucets, weird cats, smokers, and that car in the garage that will never be fixed. Why are other people’s kids in apartment buildings so loud and dirty? Just thinking about it sends shivers down my spine. No, no, no. No matter how tired I get there is no way I’m getting my own place.
Then what pray tell is the first must have item of a stay-at-home dad? It’s easy to get, it’s cheap and we got ours as a shower gift. It’s readily available from Target, it’s blue and it lights up. Technically it’s called the Mobi Blue TykeLight Jr Portable Night Led. We call it the Blue Man. What it does is let you see in the dark while your partner keeps sleeping and it’s magical. The baby wakes; my wife turns on the light and begins feeding. I do not wake up. (side note: the number one most disturbing noise to a woman is a crying baby. A crying baby doesn’t even crack the top ten for guys. The sound of a dropped pass might, but a crying baby will not wake you up without training). My wife finishes feeding, wakes me up, she goes to sleep, I burp and change the baby and put him back down to sleep. I turn off the blue man and go back to sleep myself. Ahhhh.
You see what the Blue Man really does is give you a few extra minutes of sleep each night and those minutes count. If you’ve ever hit the snooze button and prayed for just a few more minutes then the Blue Man is for you. And you can buy it right here: www.target.com. Enjoy!