At 2:30 this morning, after Ryan and I had tried for nearly three hours to get Wes back to sleep, after we'd decided to gate him in Charlie's old room, make sure he was safe, and then let him scream his fool head off if that's how he wanted to spend his evening, we decided to build a wall.
Not a metaphysical wall or an emotional wall or a relational wall. A real wall. With studs and drywall and a door.
We (I) have been resisting walling off our upstairs "game room" to create a fourth bedroom because I think two boys SHOULD be able to share a room. My parents shared rooms, I shared rooms in college. I share a room right now for goodness sake. I don't even get my own BED! And, I reasoned, we have a playroom full of toys, all they do in their room is sleep! They're too little to need privacy! How many rooms of our house do we need to dedicate to children, anyway?
As it turns out, the answer to that question is "As many as it takes."
Because after an awful day which ended in tears because Charlie was simply too tired to function after two months of being woken up before dawn by Wes (The fighting, the drama, the rudeness, it is so out of character for Charlie. And I know that some of that is normal for his age, in my heart I feel like if he was sleeping better he would be happier. Plus he has bags under his eyes the likes of which I haven't seen since my dissertation defense.) and after an awful few hours of trying to get Wes to sleep by every means possible except for the one method that works every single time (letting him scream for five minutes before dropping out cold in front of the baby gate) it just seemed absurd to hang onto a "game room" that is currently being used to house two chairs we don't want, a computer we don't use, and the Mount Kilimanjaro of Goodwill piles.
And, honestly, the thought of rolling into December with two unreliable sleepers and then adding a NEWBORN to the mix was giving me near panic attacks.
So I lay in bed (awake at two freaking thirty, thank you for that Wes), giddy thinking about the way I was going to make it all work. The extra desk would be moved into our bedroom and I would finally have a desk again! We could Craigslist the heck out of everything else. Ryan and my dad could build the wall in a weekend or two (the room is made to be an optional bedroom, with a closet and everything, so it would be easy, I think). I would paint it a soothing, big boy, khaki color and make Charlie some plaid curtains like The Wonder Years. He could have his own desk and a place for his baby cradle (where Phent sleeps).
I felt even more sure about The Wall this morning when Charlie came to the gate at the top of the stairs at 7:15 and said to me "I got to sleep until DAYTIME!" and then had the best morning we've had in WEEKS after spending the night largely alone in his and Wes's room. Poor, poor kiddo. Wes was another story, obviously, having been awake most of the night. The screaming. OH MY HOLY.
I may surprise Ryan this evening by having a pallet of lumber and sheetrock delivered to our driveway.