Chapter 7: A Change is Gonna Come

A change is gonna come…a prophecy from the late great Sam Cooke. Never were truer words spoken then the day that Nolin turned 2 years old.

It started off with a scene that I like to call Nolin James Meet Linda Blair. As we walked up to the doctor’s office Nolin got excited…We see fish?! Jenn and I were both amazed because it has been 6 months since he has been to the doctor, but he recognized the nondescript building and instantly knew that there were two fish tanks here that he enjoyed.

What we didn’t realize is this meant he also knew he was somewhere he didn’t like…the doctor.

As we took Nolin back, he walked by himself into the room, and immediately started running down the hall saying No, No, No, No. This meant that getting his weight, height and other vital measurements was going to be a difficult task. Thank God this appointment didn’t involve shots. After a few Thomas stickers, a ton of tears and cries for Mommy we got pretty accurate measurements.

At two Nolin is 26.5 lbs (a long way since 5 lbs. 10 oz.), 33.5 inches and a head circumference of 19 inches. Our boy is growing up

The doctor did indicate that it may not be a bad thing for us to get Nolin a doctor’s kit toy set. She thought that this may help him become more comfortable with visiting the doctor and not recreate the head spin scene from The Exorcist at future appointments.

Well that was over with and even more important than finding out Nolin’s measurements we were just excited to reaffirm that we have a healthy, happy boy. Apparently he is so healthy and happy that he wanted to demonstrate his abilities and independence on his first day of being two years old.

It was the day we feared. It was the day we were not prepared for…

He climbed out of the crib. Not once, not twice but three times. I got the call from Jenn, and had to pick up screws to secure all of Nolin’s dressers and shelving units to the wall. Plus we had to transition his crib to a toddler bed…that night.

With Nolin’s help, I was finishing putting the final screws in when he jumped up on the toddler bed and shouted This is so exciting! Little did we know how exciting it would be.

We quickly realized that even if we were lucky enough to be able to keep him on the bed (instead of jumping off of it and laughing), there would be no way to keep him from rolling off when he slept. This meant a 9:00 run to WalMart to get a toddler rail.

I got the rail put together and installed on his bed. Now for the fun part…bed time. Clearly this was going to be a challenge because Nolin had a new-found freedom and didn’t know what to do with himself. So we thought we would have a family slumber party to celebrate his new bed.

This basically turned into Nolin dive  bombing me from his bed as I tried to sleep on the floor.

Idea #2: We leave the room and eventually he will figure it out. This lead to Nolin walking around in circles, closing his bedroom door then opening it and saying hello, trying to climb over the baby gate, and eventually saying Mommy help me pleeeease! over and over again.

Jenn went in and tried to set him back up in his bed to no avail. So I decided I would go in and sit in the chair and keep him company until he fell asleep. When I got in I asked:


Me:  Nolin are you tired?
Nolin:  Yes
Me:  Nolin do you want to go to sleep in your big boy bed?
Nolin:  No
Me:  Nolin do you want to continue walking around in circles like a crazy person?
Nolin: Yes


Obviously this was going well. So I sucked it up, and I got my 6 foot 200lb body in his new big boy bed (not leaving a lot of room). The big boy bed now seemed interesting, so he jumped in and then quickly jumped back out. All of a sudden there was a huge lightning strike and thunder-clap.

Nolin’s eyes got huge, jaw dropped, pacifier fell to the floor and he jumped in between my chest and legs and sat Indian Style just looking at me.

Nolin:  It is raining outside?
Me:  Yes it is Nolin.
Nolin:  It is scary.
Me: It can be, but I am here, so you don’t need to be scared.
Nolin:  Did mommy fall (hmmm, not sure how Jenn would feel about that).
Me:  Nope, she is in bed sleeping.  She likes to sleep in her big girl bed.


And just like that, Nolin put his arms around me, his head on my chest and fell asleep. He even slept the whole night without a pacifier. Double Score! It was one of the coolest moments I have had as a father…except for the realization that I was now stuck in a tiny toddler bed, completely uncomfortable and unable to move.

Awesome. I laid there for a few hours trying to determine if I just sucked it up and slept there (knowing that this old body would not recover well in the morning), or do I risk waking Nolin and disturb this awesome moment.

Finally at about 1am, I was able to maneuver myself out of the bed and not wake Nolin up…he was out like a light and I was free, but part of me was really hoping that I ended up sleeping there for the night.

And so the adventures of the toddler begin…I think this effectively starts Chapter 7!

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