Friday, January 21, 2011

How Did You Sleep Last Night?

Ours could have been a little better Wednesday night. It started well. Alyson was able to get home in time to catch part of the season premiere of American Idol. We shared a light dinner together. Baby girl was sleeping snugly in her bed. Life was good.

At 11 PM things started to go south in a hurry. Alyson was struck with another bout of vertigo. Off to the bathroom she hurriedly departed, complete with the nausea and another night of sleeping on a cold tile floor next to the commode.

At 1 AM baby girl pierced the stillness of the night with a wailing call for "DADDY!!!" Complete with tears. After a quick potty stop we stumbled our way to the living room couch with the ever present Nana Joy blanky firmly in hand. Quiet was soon restored with AA falling asleep on my chest. OK, we both fell asleep but I'm pretty sure she fell asleep first.

At 2 AM the house phone rings. You have to be kidding me and then I immediately start thinking something has "happened". You know what I mean. I don't answer the phone. I'll listen to the message to grab a little time to better compose myself before calling back. Except, no message is left. Still on my chest, baby girl continued to snore away. I'm left wondering who just called and if Aly ever made it back to our bed. Already I'm thinking how dead tired I'm going to be all day.

At 2:02 AM the house phone rings again. Uh oh, surely this isn't a wrong number calling back. Something must be wrong. I get up with baby girl. Once again, no message left. I take AA potty and put her back in her own bed. She's out like a light and I'm hoping the wrong number doesn't call a third time.

At 2:05 AM I check on Alyson. Still in no condition to get up, she lays back down. I turn on the bathroom heater and consumed with guilt for leaving my wife on the bathroom floor in a fetal position, I climb in bed. All's quiet as I close my eyes.

At 2:10 AM three loud raps on the front door nearly cause a heart attack. I bolt upright and check the baby monitor. Baby girl still sound asleep. No sound coming from the bathroom otherwise known as Aly's spare bedroom. Apprehensive, I make my way to the front door.

At 2:11 AM I cautiously flip on the outdoor light with my right hand. In my left hand, visibly held low and slightly away is a loaded 38. I'm thinking, if this is a neighbor I just may scare them to death. Oh well, such is life.
And then things got interesting.

Standing a few steps back from the door with a hand resting on the handle of a holstered but untethered gun is a sheriff's deputy. Our eyes meet. I see the badge. Once again I make eye contact with the deputy. Slowly I raise my right hand up and motion to the deputy that I am backing away to put the gun in my left hand down. His nod seals our non-verbal communication and who is in control. Never out of his sight, I placed the gun on the counter behind me. I stepped back to the door with both hands in front of me and slightly raised before slowly and deliberately unlocking the door. At this point I have zero intention of playing any part of the alpha male. "Is everything alright here?" the deputy asked upon my opening the door. To which I answer yes as best I know. He asked if a 911 call had been placed from the residence. Not that I was aware of I respond.
It seems that a 911 call had gone out from our house. When the line went dead the 911 call center made a return call only to get a busy signal. Trying again, their second call to the house went to our answering machine. An officer was immediately dispatched.

I think I invited the deputy into the house but I can't be sure. I also don't think it would have mattered. The deputy came in the house. I motioned to my gun. He asked if he could remove the bullets. I quickly gave my approval to his request while informing him I had a little one sleeping in the bedroom and a sick wife in the bathroom. He followed me as I peeked in on AA and followed me but didn't come in to the bathroom as I gently roused Alyson to convey we had a visitor. Let's just say calm, clear discussion does not follow after waking a sound sleeping sick person lying on a cold bathroom floor to explain a cop in the house at 2 in the morning and oh by the way, you haven't made a 911 call have you? Stepping back into the bedroom, the deputy skips any questions he may have had for the wife. I can't say as I blamed him, Aly really wasn't much up for company. Deputy and I retreated to the living room.

The deputy said the cold weather could have inadvertently caused the 911 call to go out but a call to our service provider was in order. We awkwardly shook hands, I thanked him for checking up on us and as quickly as it began, it was over.
Aly shuffled in from the bathroom. I filled her in on what little I knew as to what just happened. We each expressed mild surprise that the deputy had not politely insisted on physically seeing her. I remember asking if he wished to do that. I'm a guy and unfortunately (disgustingly) an alarming number of husbands and boyfriends abuse the women in their lives. An all too often fact of life. The deputy asking to "speak" with Aly would not have offended me in the least. I expected it.

I checked once more on AA. Alyson made two calls to work to say she would be in later than usual and crawled into our bed. After making sure the bathroom heater was off, I loaded the .38 and slid in beside her. I was wound tight as a spring. Both exhausted, we went back to sleep. Sort of.

Morning wake-up came way too soon. What a night. And now to call the phone company. How I look forward to explaining what happened and would they please schedule a visit as soon as possible to check things out. Then again, making the call to the phone company should be a piece of cake. It has to be better than an unexplained 911 phantom phone call followed by a sheriff's deputy knocking on your door at 2 in the morning.

So, how did you sleep last night?


Number 6 and no more counting! said...

wow! quite the story! But, really well written.

what a night!


Kathy said...

Wow, you have some excitement at your house. Glad they are there doing their jobs though. Hope AA and Allison were able to wake up in good spirits after the night all of you had.
Here's to a good nights sleep for all of you.
Sure wish they could figure out the vertigo.

Brian and Ruth said...

Sorry to admit, I slept pretty good, thanks for asking!!!

Oh my goodness Ford, what a heckofva night you guys had.

Please give our best to Alyson. Here's to praying for you guys today and you endure through the daylight hours!!!

M3 said...


Michelle said...

You had me on the edge of my seat with this! I'm so glad it turned out to be an uneventful rest of the night.

I'm so sorry Aly is suffering with vertigo. I had it for a month a little over a year ago and I have never been so miserable in my life. I hope she gets some relief soon!

Debbie & Barry said...

If she's suffered with this for a long time, please consider an appointment at Mayo. My sister went and their plan of action assessment and plan of action was/is very comforting...please e-mail me if you'd like more info. Sorry to hear of that crazy night!

Vivian M said...

Oh wow. I so hope your wife is feeling better, I have gotten vertigo on long car trips and it is absolutely horrible.
I hope everyone has gotten a better night's sleep since this post!