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Is My Kid Psychic?

Photograph by Getty Images

Pretty much any sleep these days is good sleep. My party girls hate to go to bed and I don’t blame them—who wants to miss a minute of the possible fun reserved for grown-ups? And daytime naps? Heck, even the toddler knows those are for suckers. She pushes through her sleepiness like a champ.

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So on most nights my husband and I end up passing out with the kids at 9 or 10 p.m. Then, I’m up a few times during the night to tend to the toddler, who may or may not go back to sleep. The next morning, the 3-year-old heads to preschool with deep red grooves under her eyes, looking like she’s been on a bender, and I drink a coffee so huge my husband quips, “Do you think four espressos is enough? Maybe try five.”

I know and believe in the importance of a good night’s rest, and I love it when I actually get one. Even more so, I love it when my kids wake up happy and recharged instead of haggard and moody.

So I’m trying really hard to get everyone to bed earlier and last night I actually succeeded. But here’s the rub: though the kids and I all fell asleep at 8:30 and even the baby made it all through the night without waking (we count 5 a.m. as sleeping through the night, FYI), I had a night full of nightmares. And so, apparently, did the 3-year-old, who (yes, I’ll confess we co-sleep) slept right next to me all night. When we woke up, we compared notes.

If she can see my dreams, what else can she find that I’m hiding?

“I had a bad dream,” I said.

“What was it?” she asked. I didn’t want to tell her because my horrific dream was that I’d lost her at a party—I spent all night, trying, unsuccessfully, to find her. It was awful.

“Someone was mean to me,” I lied.

“I had a bad dream, too,” she said.

“What was it?”

“I couldn’t find you anywhere!”

Cue the freaky music because it seems we both had the ultimate in mommy anxiety dreams: losing your child. Is shared dreaming possible? I don’t know, and I’m not about to get all new age about it except to say that, yes, goose bumps did appear on my arms. How scary to have my kid in my head! If she can see my dreams, what else can she find that I’m hiding? The brownies I hid in the highest kitchen cabinet? The Halloween candy that’s still around? That I wasn’t “really tired” the day after Thanksgiving but rather suffering the effects of one-too-many a glass of wine. How far back is this knowledge going to go? When she gets older will she intrinsically know all the horrible stuff I did in my teens? I hope not.

RELATED: The Benefits of Being a Psychic Mom

Because it’s best to keep some things in the dark.

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