We, being Kevin and I, have been struggling to get Matthew to bed at night for oh say about 3 and a half years. Yes, that is as long as he has been alive give or take a week or two. Recently, Matthew has not been sleeping like at all ALL night long. I walk by in the night to feed Marisa and I hear him, sitting there, listening back at me waiting for the morning to come. It's weird and I am totally at a loss as to how to deal with this. We gave him a brighter night light. We have tried turning his closet light on. I even bought him this cool night light that turns into a flash light and is shaped like penguin. His name is Peter Penguin, in case you were wondering. We have tried talking with him about his fears, given him words to get rid of whatever scares him in the night. We tell the scary monsters to get out of the house and lock them out. We have told him to tell the monsters that this is HIS house and they cannot scare him. The list goes on and on.
I totally feel for Matthew. I was terrified of the dark as a kid. I slept with my closet light on for years and years. I finally out grew it but I do remember screaming for my dad in the night to come save me from the scary things that lived in my room. I did that for years as well. Now I know why my parents were always so tired... come to think of it, why I was so tired.
Tonight Matthew wanted this one picture he made while at Barnes and Noble a few months back. It is a crayon drawing with Star Wars stickers on it that the nice B&N lady gave him to play with. He has been asking for the picture for awhile. I finally dug it. I noticed all his art work had been pulled out. Matthew coped to the fact that he went through it recently. In that pile of art work is a little book that someone made for him when he left his old day care. I am not sure why I kept it. I was not fond of the place. Maybe I thought that if he remembered stuff about his old day care I could pull that out to talk with him about it. Since leaving that day care he has never brought it up, not a single thing about it. We hardly talk about it either.
After getting his Clone Wars picture out and hanging it back up in his room, he asked me to read the BDLC book to him so I did. Then I told him it was time to get in bed. He started asking me questions that pertained to BDLC. Who bite me when I was there? (we have never ever talked about those incidents...) Who pinched me? (Same thing.) I told him that N did the pinching and biting. Then he looked me right in the eye and said "why did F pinch and bite me?" First I was in awe of his memory. I assume that he remembers some it. It was very traumatic and not just for us but still could he seriously remember that stuff?
I thought he completely forgot about BDLC and we have looked at that book one other time since he left that day care. He never once brought up the biting/pinching/scratching incidents when we last looked at it. It freaked me out. I did not know what to say to him. He was really quiet and seemed really sad about why that little boy bite and pinched him. He even pointed to the exact spot where he had a really bad bite from F! My kid has a mind like a steel trap. Scary.