My kid has vacillated her entire life between being a ‘we got so lucky she such a great sleeper’ sleeper and a ‘she’s never going to sleep again’ sleeper.
She is very much like me in that she hates going to sleep. Actually deciding to shut everything down, shut your book, lie down in bed and going to sleep. She tells me that she doesn’t like going to sleep and she doesn’t know how to sleep and I can’t do anything but empathize because I know exactly what she means.
But here’s the thing: She needs sleep.
This kid never stops moving. Her entire day is spent bouncing around, talking, being active. She needs to sleep. And since she hasn’t napped since she was just about a year old, she needs to sleep at night.
We start bedtime at 5:30 because we know that no matter what she’s going to be awake by 7 am. (There was that stretch of about a month that she was waking for the day at 4 am – that was awesome).
In the last week we have been starting bedtime around 5:30 and it has been rare for her to be asleep before 8 pm. This means a long, frustrating bedtime for everyone, and an over tired, obnoxious child the next day.
(And a mother who has to remind herself throughout the day that she loves her daughter dearly).
I decided to change the kids furniture around. I thought maybe changing things up would make a difference. I asked her where she might want her bed and what we could do, I moved things around, and when I called her back in she got very excited. She climbed right up onto the bed, she told me it was “fantastic!” She told me she loved it, and crawled under the covers to try it out right away. It was better than any reaction I had anticipated.
I went out to an event in the evening, my mom handled bedtime, and when I got home – at 9:30 – she was awake and Grandma had been sent to relay a message: She wants her bed back where it was.
I was exhausted, it was a frustrating end to a frustrating day at the wrong end of a frustrating week. Without being able to stop myself I broke down in tears just at the words.
It sucked. It also sucked that this was the third time during the same day that I had cried out of frustration.
I’m stuck in this idea that there has to be a solution, but my daughter seems intent on proving that theory wrong.