Sunday, June 18, 2006

The Battle of the Bedrooms

updated izani's blog.


After 2 days of Ilham going back on his promise that if he plays with the PS2 he will sleep on his own, the day before his excuse was that the leaky tap was noisy and kept him awake (therefore he has to sleep in our room). So yesterday I got the tap fixed. When he still did not want to sleep in his own bed last night, it was the last straw. I firmly (read: raised my voice) told Ilham that he has run out of excuses. I pulled their comforters and chased them out of my room into theirs.
I ordered them to get into bed and pull the comforters up to their chin and to go to sleep. I asked them whether they wanted the lights on or off (Ihsan wanted it on), the door opened or closed (Ilham wanted it open). Ilham whimpered please please but I stood firm and said goodnight.

A few minutes later I heard a soft knock on our bedroom door.
"Ayah?" Ilham called softly.
"Yes Ilham... I am here, go back to sleep" Taufik answered
"Ayah.. you're a kind man.. please let me sleep with you" Ilham pleaded.
I sternly told Taufik not to cave in. To say nothing else and let me handle it.
I marched to the door and opened it.
I stood with my hands on my hips and glared "Hah! Apa lagi?? kenapa tak tidor lagi??" (What else do you want? Why aren't you asleep yet?)

"But Bonda, I love you.. I want to be near you" Ilham tried to explain while I poked and pushed them back to their room.
"Ilham," I started, "You're a big boy now. You promised me that you would start sleeping in your room when the holiday started. But you broke that promise. Then you promised me that if you played PS2, you would sleep in your own room. You broke that promise too. Then you said the leaky tap was the reason, but I fixed the tap, and still you wont sleep in your room. I am really dissapointed, you know? and I am really angry that you broke your promises. Now tell me the truth, what is the problem? So that we can fix it and you can sleep in your room. Bottom line, I want you to sleep in your own room".
"I don't like my room" he said.
"Why. Why don't you like your room? Coz it's messy? You made the mess. Tomorrow you clean it up. tonight you're still sleeping in it." I argued.
Ilham was at a loss for a moment, while Ihsan sat on one corner of the bed, smiling his sheepish smile. Ihsan didnt seem to have a problem. He sleeps anywhere his brother sleeps.

"Are you afraid that we wont love you anymore if you're not sleeping with us?" I finally offered.
"Urm.. yes" Ilham said reluctantly.
"Ilham, I don't sleep with nenek, does it mean I dont love her, or nenek doesnt love me? I still love her, but I'm a big girl, so I do not need to sleep with nenek anymore. I still know that she loves me even if we are not near each other." I half-explained-half-nagged.
"But I am a special boy, I need to be near my parents" Ilham made another excuse.
"Because you are a special boy, I think you are strong and brave enough to sleep on your own. I want you to be independent. We would be so proud of you if you could sleep on your own. I know you can do it. You just have to try" I said.
He looked at me with tears slowly drying from his eyes.
"So, if I sleep in my own room, it will make you happy?" he finally said.
"Yes, it will make me happy and proud" I said.
"Okay. I will try" he said.
wahhh so easy ah?? why didnt I think of this earlier?

So we said our goodnights and I love yous and we hugged and I tucked him into bed.
After much lecturing, threatening, begging, cajoling, negotiating, explaining and nagging, it finally took a good scolding and forcing to make them really do it.
We woke up this morning and they were still in their own bed.
Taufik decided to write Ilham a little note before he went off to work:

"Dear Ilham,
Congratulations! You made it. You slept in your room. We are so proud of you. I love you too.

I gave Ilham the note when he woke up and told him what a good job he did.
I heard him singing "Ilham is the bravest and best boy" in the shower this morning.


I hope I'm not jinxing it by writing this.

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