nighttime routines

For the past few evenings, Caila and I have gone through a routine.
Before dinner, we would settle ourselves on the carpet in our living room and I would take out my mobile phone and play Caila’s latest favorite song.
My daughter would then hold the phone and sway her head from side to side while sitting in my lap. The song is played over and over until it’s time for us to have dinner.

When it’s time for her to sleep, I would take out “Love You Forever,” ask her to identify some of the pictures, and read to her as she snuggles beside me. Once the lights are turned off, I would give her the book, she would hug it against her chest, then doze off to dreamland still embracing the book. Since we started, she can’t seem to sleep without it.

The other night, for example, after I finished reading, I placed it on the side table while Caila drank her milk. As soon as she had finished, she asked for her book. Here’s how our conversation went:

Caila: Mommy, book?
Me: Huh? Wala sa akin. Di ba nasa yo?
Caila: Wala.
(she starts looking under the pillows, bedsheets and blankets).
Me: Wala?
Caila: Wala
(with both her hands open).
Me: Ah, baka nasa moon. Kasi di ba may moon sa book? Siguro gusto nyang makita. Tingnan mo yung moon sa labas. (we both look out the window at the moon)
Caila: Moon? Book?
Me: Opo. Hayaan mo, borrow lang ni Moon yung book. Bukas, isosoli nya yun.
Caila: Borrow? Moon? Book?
Me: Opo. Pero dapat ask mo si Moon na isoli nya yung book para read uli tayo bukas.
Caila: Bukas?
Me: Opo. Sige na, ask mo yung moon na isoli nya yung book.
Caila: Please, Moon, soli book.


This went on and on, with her even asking me to help her ask the moon (which I did).  She was so cute, looking at the moon and pleading for it to give back her book. I could hear her voice quivering as if she wanted to cry, but she was trying to put up a brave front. I couldn’t help but smile.

After some time, hubby entered the room and joined us in bed. Caila told him that her beloved book was with the moon, so he joined her in asking the moon to return it. This continued until finally, hubby told the moon to give the book back because Caila wouldn’t be able to sleep without it; and as soon as she lay down, he slid the book in her arms.

You can imagine how happy she was! She hugged it real tight like a pillow as if she never wanted to let it go. I was afraid it would crush! Within 2 minutes, our daughter had gone to sleep...and yes, the book was in her arms.

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