The scene: my bedroom, late at night. Y’all are adults, and can use your imaginations to fill in the action behind this (very quiet, sneaky, don’t-let-the-kids-catch-us) dialog:

Me: “mmmm”
Husband: “ooooh”
Me: “oh! oh! Oooooh!”

The door slams open, hard. We jump apart like teenagers caught in the back of a car. When I dare to peek out from under the covers, the doorway appears empty, but my husband says, “Oh no. The Sheriff’s back in town.”

I look down, and down. Then I see her: twenty-eight pounds of naked fury. Her hair is standing straight up on her head. She has, in her rage, vaporized her PJs* and is standing there naked as the day she was born. A little more naked, actually, since she is (happily) not covered with slime. Her hair is standing straight up on her head, adding an air of authority and stature to her chunky little frame. Her hands are balled into fists and her looks says everything:

Get your hands off my Mama!

Her dad and I stifle a laugh (from opposite sides of the bed, where we have been cowering since she slammed the door open). Sheriff Baby uses her superpowers to become airborne, launching herself onto the bed in a single bound. She latches onto my exposed nipple as she makes her descent, and is sleeping peacefully between us by the time her head hits the pillow.

I swear, they come with a built-in alarm system to ward off any future siblings. It’s OK, Sheriff, we’ve got it covered. You can sleep through this shift IN YOUR OWN BED.

*srsly, where did her PJs go? She was wearing them when she went to bed. When did that child learn to operate a zipper?