I’m in the living room of my former in-laws’ house. My ex-husband walks down the hall toward me, smiling.

That’s good, I think. At least he’s smiling. He stops in front of me where I stand beside the TV.

Funny, I muse, nothing about this place has changed in eight years.

I look at my ex and try to figure out what to say.

Why did he move back home? I wonder. He got to keep the house after the separation.

This reunion is as awkward as I expected. Where’s his wife? I ask myself. The last time he appeared on Facebook under “People You May Know,” his profile picture was that of a baby boy. That confirmed he married the co-worker to whom he had confessed to me that he was attracted.

Why did I come here? I ask myself. Something’s not right, I think as alarm bells sound in my head.


Awaking to discover the alarm wasn’t in my head, I stumbled out of bed and to the dresser. I fumbled in the dark with the clock radio. Since I hadn’t set the alarm, I had no idea how to turn it off. Once I finally silenced the squawking, I looked at the red digital display: 12:02 AM.

Peter was still snoring, so I tiptoed around the corner to peek into Philip’s room. His pillow was on the floor and the blanket was half-way off, but the culprit was still sprawled sound asleep on his bed.

This was the second night in a row that the alarm went off. The previous night it woke me at 3:36 AM. Thinking that a car alarm was sounding on the street, I got up to look out the window. It wasn’t until I was standing  that I discovered the beeping was coming from Peter’s dresser. The volume on the clock radio was turned so low that it sounded as if it were coming from outside. I pushed buttons and moved switches until the one on the left side turned it off. Unfortunately, I didn’t remember this technique the following night when the alarm was no longer muffled.

When Philip needs down time in the afternoon, we send him up to our bedroom where we have a second TV and DVD player hooked up. He is less likely to take a nap nowadays, but he does like to crawl into Daddy’s side of the bed, cover himself with the heavy red blanket and watch Curious George. Of course, our little monkey doesn’t just stay under the covers. Like his curious friend, he explores our room, jumps on the bed, and otherwise keeps himself entertained while George provides background noise. Apparently, the clock not only tells time, it passes the time, too.

my little pumpkin sleeping next to a good little monkey

Oh, sure-he looks innocent in this photo

On the third night that the alarm sounded, the volume was turned down again. Once more, I was the only one awakened, the only one not stubbing my toe in the dark, and the only one using process of elimination to find the off switch. Hopefully, the third time will be the charm. From now on, I’m either going to remember how to turn the alarm off quickly or else I’ll remember to check the damn thing before going to bed.

Don’t be alarmed if I forget.

I encouraged a few other bloggers to link up to the challenge grid. Thought I better lead by example.

It’s Day 6! I’m 20% done with NaBloPoMo!


36 thoughts on “Alarming

  1. Lately, once I’m up, I’m up for good – hence the reason I’ve been able to do a blog post every day… so far… I wouldn’t have minded the 3:45 one, but the one shortly after midnight – ARRRGH! That would be tough to handle.


    1. I’m used to having my little guy wake me up in the middle of the night-just not via an alarm clock! I’ve learned to get back to sleep as soon as I can. I never know what the next night will bring.


  2. ugh. I hate that up-in-the-night thing. I don’t ever go back to sleep and so I just flop there in the bed, resenting everyone else IN THE WORLD who is asleep. I think you show admirable restraint in not throwing the damn clock out the window.


    1. I wish I would have taken a picture of the other thing he has started doing to pass the time: tying objects to the ceiling fan string. Walked into the dark bedroom and thought it was an effigy.


  3. My son has that exact Curious George stuffie! My mom sent it and he loves it. Really amazing writing!! I’ve been known to sleep through alarms and only set them occasionally now. I hear “Mommy?” way before I hear “beep beep beep.” I think that’s maybe not normal…


  4. Ha! This reminds me of how my son sneaks into my room and messes with my alarm clock radio; and either it goes off and I can’t hear it or it’s louder than ten car alarms! Then there’s my hubby’s alarm in the next room (don’t ask, it works for us, LOL) and it goes off at 5 am. I hate alarms.


  5. Alarm clocks have always and continue to make me nervous. It’s like that Seinfeld episode where the guy has to wake up in time for a marathon and the alarm clock gets messed up and he misses it. It was Kramer’s fault I think. (It’s always Kramer’s fault!) I just always have that nagging feeling something’s going to go wrong. Thank God for Siri. That phone never fails me.


  6. My problem is I will check my alarm clock several times, get settled, check it again, and then check it again as I’m just about falling asleep and wake myself up again. It’s become too much of a ritual, but I would never forget to check it!


  7. My two-year old plays with the alarm clock and wreaks havoc and destruction whenever he gets the chance! I liked reading about your dream, too.


  8. I’m the one who wakes up at the slightest noise, so it would be me getting up in the dark and stubbing my toe and cursing a blue streak under my breath. Dreams are interesting, sometimes they are all about unfinished things, but of course you never dream about why you dreamt about that particular topic!


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