When I was younger, I used to think that growth spurts happened while I was sleeping. I figured that my legs were silently, slowly growing each night as I slept. After all, how else was I going to be 6 feet 5 inches by the time I was 18? I knew that I couldn’t possibly be growing during the day because I was far too active. I would constantly trip if my legs were to grow while I was running. Right? This all made perfect sense at the time.
Unfortunately, I fell about eight inches short of my ideal height and began to question all I had previously known to be true. Was I really growing at night? Was Santa real? Was it really illegal to throw a snowball at my mother (I really was convinced of this for an embarrassingly long time)? I was frustrated that I continued to be a relatively small dude. I wanted to play sports, or be a professional wrestler. Was this all impossible? Those absurd milk commercials certainly didn’t help me manage expectations about my future size. Remember the one where the kid looks in the mirror, while drinking milk, and sees a man with a torso that was likely made in a science lab? I was told that milk would do my body good, and that I could eventually look like Bo Jackson if I kept drinking it. Lies. All lies. I waited for that torso until I was a young adult. It never came.
It has been many years since I believed that I did all my growing at night. That thought has completely left my brain. Or at least it had, until last week. My son is doing all of his growing at night, and now I can prove it. Last week, Oliver began to wake up throughout the night. It took us a while to understand why our amazing sleeper was suddenly up during the night.
We soon discovered that Oliver was experiencing what many call a “growth spurt.” The little monster demands much more food throughout the day and continues to be hungry during the night. This might sound adorable. It sometimes is. Last week, it was not adorable. Oliver woke up several times throughout the night, and we wondered what might be bothering him. Out of curiosity, we gave him a bottle. Then I gave him some food. Then I gave him some more food. And some more. He basically ate three rows of a grocery store over the course of an hour.
I know now that I was not doing all of my growing during the night. However, the same cannot be said about my son. During the day, he is active, playful and content. At night, he becomes the Hulk and eats everything in our kitchen. He is growing, folks, and it’s all happening at night. One day I might wake up and find a linebacker in my house. Until then, I’m going to enjoy the little baby.