We survived the Baby Rave

So, the other night was Rave Night. 

Not in the classic dancing-the-night-away sense of the phrase, but a baby-style rave with the grandchildren, so named because when my grandchildren (aged 3 and 1) stay over, Kev and I quite often (as the words of the Faithless anthem go) “Don’t get no sleep”.

I picked them up on Saturday afternoon, steeled for the long night ahead. 

My granddaughter is much better at sleeping now, so I assumed she’d be less up for pulling an all-nighter, but I checked my grandson had all the things he’d need: 

  • Sleepsuit

  • Travel cot

  • Glow-sticks

  • Tank top

  • White gloves

  • Neon sunglasses

  • Air horn…

Yup, we were ready to roll.

I’d made a loose plan with Kev following the last all-nighter, that I’d take my grandson out of earshot as much as possible during the night so if I needed to collapse in the early hours of the morning, he’d be able to take the little one off me and I could catch up on some sleep.

Well, you know what the famous poem by Robert Burns said: 

“The best laid schemes o' mice an' men

Gang aft a-gley” (often go wrong)

On the way home, my granddaughter woke up from a little car-nap screaming “Ow! My ear!”.

She nodded off again momentarily, and then squealed “Ow, Ow! It hurts!”

I pulled the car over to check to see she hadn’t been stung, but all appeared fine, so I gave her some reassurance and told her I’d give her lots of cuddles when we got back to our house.

This situation had Ear Infection written all over it. 

Aft A-gleying Hell!

We were heading for a Double All Nighter…

I called my GP son when I got home, just to gen up on the protocol for looking after poorly children, and to see if he had any further advice. 

After taking me through some checks and being satisfied that it wasn’t anything too serious at that point, he gave me advice on at which point I should call 111, then wished me luck for the night ahead. 

The poor little girl was really suffering with her ear and needed all my cuddles, meaning there was a definite separation with the girls’ and boys’ teams.

Usually, if my grandson needs to be rocked to sleep it’ll generally be me who does it, but the ball had definitely rolled into Kev’s court that night and he did a brilliant job. 

We separated the kids as much as possible so they didn't wake each other up, and apart from doing the occasional drug-run (don’t get excited - it was only Calpol) I left the lads to it. 

Kev and I swapped notes with bleary eyes when we met over the breakfast table on Sunday morning. 

Thankfully, after a disturbed night, my granddaughter felt much better the next day. Her ear was doing “hiccups” suggesting some kind of gunge had made its way out of her tiny ear tubes and the pressure she was experiencing had gone. 

My grandson was perkily eating his Weetabix in a “What’s wrong with you people? Sleep is overrated!” way. 

And I wearily hi-fived Kev. 

“We did it! We survived the Baby Rave!”

It was a great sense of achievement to be out the other side of a night like that.

You know the good thing about tricky times? 

They really make you appreciate the easy times.

Just before the kids were picked up late morning, Kev and I cleared the floor of toys, hoovered and wiped all the gunk and dribble from various surfaces in the house. 

When we came in from waving them goodbye, we hugged for a moment in complete silence. 

As much as we adore the little people and look forward to having them, it felt amazing to reclaim the peace in our house once again - no squealing, crying, and inane electronic kids’ programme music from on the TV. 

Just distant birdsong, a gentle clock ticking and the sound of our dog, Eddie, breathing a long sigh on his bed. 

Is there anything about your life you take for granted until it’s not there? 

Maybe, it’s simply a good night’s sleep, or a peaceful home? 

Feeling gratitude for the little things is just as important, if not more so, than the big things.

That’s because when you’re having a really bad day, there might not feel as if there’s much to be grateful for, but there always is when you look for it. 

And feeling gratitude lies at the heart of having a great attitude in life generally. 

The author 

Vicki LaBouchardiere