Saying goodbye to the vampire


Vampire hours

Each summer my son reverts back to what I refer to as “the vampire hours.” He has his days and nights mixed up.

Now if you thought that was reserved for infants, you haven’t experienced a teenage boy’s version of summer. I’m startled awake by the noise from the kitchen as he makes lunch at 3am.

He rustles from his cave

Hearing a familiar clinking sound, he bounds from his room. Having been without human contact for the last 6-7 hours, he is excited to have someone to talk to. I guess it is good to hear a human voice after you have been busy modding alien creatures on a computer game all night. Many of the programmers I know are night owls, so he would fit right in at MIT…his dream school.

I’m not awake yet

I’m innocently making coffee at 7am when he materializes in the kitchen. Did I just hear the “whhoossh” of a cape? The excited rambling about his night’s accomplishments swirls in my sleepy brain. For half an hour, I savor this rare interaction with him. He ends the conversation with the daily question, “What’s for dinner?”

Dinner at this hour?
“It’s 7:00am,” I reply. “The dinner you slept through is in the refrigerator. By the way, do you have a recent photo I can put on the wall in case I forget what you look like?”

“Very amusing.”

He makes a peanut butter sandwich and disappears back to the cave. By noon he is asleep.

Life goes on without him

The girls and I had many adventures while the vampire slept. He promised to go see Toy Story 3 with us but couldn’t stay awake. I returned from the movie a crying mess. Standing in his doorway, I mumbled something like “I only have three more years with you, and you can’t even go to the movies with me.” After that guilt-inducing display, he spent a few mornings watching movies with me. I was thrilled!

Our summer family memory…yes that is singular

Then came the day the three kids had a dentist appointment at 10:00am. After the appointment I suggested we all go to lunch. It was a special occasion…the only time during the summer that all three kids were:

  • Dressed
  • Clean
  • Awake
  • Trapped in the car with me with no chance for escape

All at the same time! It was a miracle. I was driving, so they had no choice.

I ignored the protests as I pulled into the parking lot of Fridays. We had a lovely lunch. Everyone was laughing with each other and having a great time. I guess deep down they understood it was important to me, and they were on their best behavior. I wish I had taken a picture.

My son has returned

Now that summer is over, he is back. I couldn’t be more thrilled. He’s still my baby even if he’s taller than me now. He’s a fantastic, brilliant, funny kid, and I couldn’t be prouder of him. I guess that is why he gets away with the vampire hours.

The cape hangs in the back of the closet…until next summer.


  1. Does your son have an XBox360? If yes, our boys probably know each other πŸ˜‰ In the summer, my son sits up most of the night directing his virtual army crew through all sorts of terrain. I’d totally be a vampire, too, if society didn’t force me to be awake, working and taking my kids to school in the daylight hours πŸ˜‰
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    • Yes he does. Your son must be commanding the other side of the war. LOL Since he is always the self-proclaimed leader of his team, barking out commands, I can hear him through a door and across the house at 4am.

      I tend to work into the wee hours of the night during the summer, too …so sadly 3/4 of the family can be found wandering the house at 2:00am. We’re still adjusting back.

  2. I think in some households in the world, there are those who opt to stay awake at night and sleep in the morning. I, for one, have been also doing that sometimes. Some reasons to be awake at night are: You have to level up/conquer a territory in a videogame or you would lose track if you did not play immediately; It’s kind of fun eating food in the middle of the night; the atmosphere is great as there is no sun to make you sweat; and a lot of other things.. My best reason: Plain ol’ insomnia. πŸ™‚
    Kids, even if they grow up physically and mentally, they still will forever be your β€œbabies”. Gotta love β€˜em!
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  3. I’ve pulled all-nighters playing games before too, I miss those days! Now, I can’t stay awake past 1am or else I get punished for it like I did last night (or should I say this morning?). I’d only had barely 3 hours of sleep when my Little Miss started stirring and playing with my face – and didn’t go back to sleep until 2 hours later.

    Glad you have your ‘baby’ back. πŸ˜‰

    • I can’t stay up past 12 anymore without being a complete zombie. I actually slept through the alarm this AM which never happens. I was laughing because my son came in the room and said my line “We have to leave in 10 minutes. Get up!” ha ha

  4. I’m now following you on twitter.
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  5. Hi Melinda,
    Really amazing post. I totally agree that summer time is also the time of the vampires. Teenage vampires so to speak. But thanks be to God it happens only ones a year, only during summer time lol…

  6. Interesting story..some teenage boy’s are getting addicted to computer games..and making them to forget to eat on time in lunch or dinner.. sometimes.. they didn’t eat the whole day.. i agree that summer time is a vampire time..
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  7. Well, vacation is eating our kids time and sometimes the main attraction is from the modern technology. And nowadays, we can’t stop them to use it.
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  8. We have one of these vampires, too. He’s sixteen. He stays up until four in the morning, then sleeps until two in the afternoon. (Well, weekends and summers, anyway.) How this all works with his need to eat every fifteen minutes, I have no idea.

    Great blog, Melinda. I’ll definitely be back to read more!
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  9. Hi Melinda,
    Really amazing post.its a interesting story..thanks for post

  10. vampire stories are great…
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