Monday, June 17, 2013

Lessons from a Child: Indiana Jones

Are you familiar with the Indiana Jones' movie "Raider of the Lost Ark"? 

In the opening scene, our hero/archaelogist Jones confronts hordes of deadly tarantulas, dodges poison darts and light-sensitive impaling spikes, and swings across a deep chasm (with the help of Jones' trademark bullwhip), in order to reach a small golden idol on a booby-trapped altar.  After carefully replacing the priceless artifact with a small sack of dirt of what he estimates to be the same weight, Jones soon realizes that he has miscalculated. 

The switch triggers thundering tremors and the huge altar collapses.  Jones exit from the temple is even more dramatic as the scene climaxes with a huge boulder rolling down an overhead track on its way to seal the cave entrance, crushing all in its path.  Our hero narrowly escapes by leaping to safety outside the cave just ahead of the juggernaut.

This action-packed sequence replays in my mind as I finish coaxing my newborn to sleep.  I must time my next moves with precision.  My baby is asleep, but for how long? 

The goal is to lay him down without him waking up.  I must be stealthy and quiet.  One false move and he could awaken and my previous efforts will be in vain.  I must use every ounce of intuition to choose the exact right moment to put the baby down. 

And then there are additional forces at work:
  • Will my 4 year old shout "MOM!" at the inopportune moment?
  • Will the phone ring?
  • Will the baby detect that he is no longer nestled next to his mommy's beating heart?
  • Will he feel the lack of pressure and warmth as my arms unwrap from his tiny body? 
  • Will my 4 year old have the incredible urge to "be helpful" and check on his brother?
  • Will he hear the creak of the door or floor?
  • Will he wet his diaper and wake up?
Almost daily, I hear the theme song from the movie playing in my head.  "Dun dah dun daaaaa, dun dah daa, dun dah dun daaa, dun dah da da dunnn..."  Thankfully, my sense of humor is still intact, right?  *smile*

And today I have successfully put the baby down to sleep without incident, but the saga continues.  Each day has its' new challenges.  And the adventure never ends!