Judging by the behavior of our kid, falling asleep is apparently a learned behavior. Like many things about babies, this came as a complete surprise to me. Like many other things in life that occupy more or less all of your available time, I’ve come to (um) enjoy distinctions in the phases and qualities of a child’s sleep that I never knew existed.
Falling asleep –
Stage 1: Cranky. Much crying.
Stage 2: Eyes slowly getting heavier, ever heavier…
Stage 3: “Hey, I forgot to complain about…” More crying. The cat meows a little in worried sympathy (awww, that’s cute).
Stage 4: Eyes closed. Rapid breathing. Slowing, slows, maybe this is —
Stage 5: Blind panic. Arms windmill against the matress, feet pump up and down, head whips from side to side; it’s like he’s possessed by a jack hammer. Ear-piercing wailing. The cat bails to the other side of the house.
Stage 6: Utterly instantaneous transition to sleep.
It is frankly amazing that any of us lived to be grown-ups.