Tuesday, March 15, 2011

(Mommy JD) Just say no to late naps

And do I really have to explain why? When my son naps at home with me (usually only on the weekends) I try to get him down between 1pm-3pm. Once it gets close to 4pm it's decision time- you have to decide whether a nap is absolutely necessary right now or if you can just go 3 more hours and put him to bed early. Allowing a nap after 4pm is flirting with disaster (note: this applies only to 2-3 year olds. Babies obviously sleep around the clock and I am so looking forward to that again). If you absolutely must nap your child after 4pm, I suggest you wake him/her up after an hour. Toddlers around this age like to sleep for 3+ hours, which at first is the bomb. I remember when Gr took his first 3 hour nap some time ago- I was so hype I didn't know what to do with myself. Yes, a 3 hour nap is blissful when they will still go to bed around 8pm.

However, a few months ago I realized that a 3 hour nap, no matter what time they take it, can be detrimental to bedtime. Thus, when Gr takes a long nap on the weekends, I am mentally prepared for him to not go to bed until 9-9:30pm. And I can deal with that. Late naps, however, are another situation. No matter how lengthy the nap, 45min, 1 hour, 2 hours, whatever- you will undoubtedly have an extreme bedtime battle after a late afternoon nap.

So it's 5:30pm and my husband and I (carpooling as of late) go to pick up our son from my mother-in-law's. She looks at us like we're early (daylight savings time?) and tells us that she JUST put Gr down for a nap. Huh? Okay, obviously I have not broken down the 4pm nap time decision formula for her- but I figure she wouldn't abide by it anyway. So I let him sleep until 6pm, eat dinner, and try not to think about the consequences of his refreshed state.

We get home about 7:30pm, change into PJs, and let Gr play in his room by himself. Around 8pm he comes in our room and wants to lay in bed with us. Mind you my husband had been up working since 3:30am and I had a severe sinus headache so we were both about to pass out. We let him watch cartoons in bed as we rested and at 8:30pm I tell him it's time to go to bed. Protest. But he begrudgingly goes into his room, slowing picks up his toys (stalling), and picks out a book. We read, we say prayers- in the bed. He insists I leave the light on. Now, the first time he made this request I acquiesced and he actually fell asleep with the light on. My husband disagrees with this tactic so we compromised by leaving his closet Christmas lights on the timer. So I turn on the timer and tell him he has to stay in the bed or I will turn off the light. Yeah right.

I'm no fool so I don't go get in the bed. My husband is already snoring away so I just go into the office and get on the computer. There's nothing worse than falling asleep just to have your toddler disturb you. So sat on toddler patrol making him get back in the bed whenever I heard him get out or open his door. And of course he did that for about an hour or so before I couldn't stand it any longer and had to get in the bed. Shortly thereafter I hear him coming down the hall talking about turning his music back on so I tap my husband to get up (your turn!). He does (with an attitude) and of course what daddy says goes so that was the end of that.

I really gotta eliminate the lights and music from this bedtime situation, but I am so not up for the battle....

No comments:

Post a Comment

Blog Design by A Mommy's Blog Design (© Copyright 2012)