Out of three kids, we’ve got all of one trained to go to bed when he’s told. That would be the 9-year-old. The toddler put in a brief stint of going to bed at 8:00PM last summer and then started sleeping in, napping late, and staying up late again starting in September. We’ve been trying to get him to go to sleep earlier again since then.
Last night, after one last time of him waking up the not-quite-asleep baby, I got fed up and sent him to his father. They both came back a few minutes later to plague me with more noise. At this point, the baby was so wide awake, that I gave up and handed him over to Daddy while I took the toddler to his room to enforce bedtime. This was the third night in a row of slightly earlier bedtimes and he seems to be responding relatively well. Granted, I have to read six stories, make sure he has his stuffed zebra (the toy of the month), turn on the nightlight, and sing a little before he’ll let me leave the room, but it’s a start.
I finally escaped the toddler’s clutches around 10:50 only to have to try to get the baby asleep again. This success came around 11:30PM. Finally, my husband had some quiet time to ourselves. We used the time to watch Warehouse 13 and Eureka so I could have some wind-down time before climbing into bed only to wind up co-sleeping with the baby. Of course, just as I was heading to the bathroom to brush my teeth, the baby woke up again. He finally settled after a little feeding and two attempts to get him back down. As I brushed my teeth, I heard a bump on the other side of the wall. There, in his doorway, clutching his zebra was the toddler. He rubbed his eyes and asked in a most pathetic voice if he could sleep with me. So, I led him to bed, and got him all settled before doing my rounds of the house to make sure all the doors were locked and lights were off. With one last check of the time, I climbed into bed at 2:30AM…and had to climb out a little later to pull the baby into bed with me so he could feed.
If this keeps up, I will not be looking forward to September when I have to start getting up at 7:00AM to get the nine-year-old ready for school again. All I can hope is that the scheme to get the toddler to bed earlier starts working and I can finally have my tiny bit of quiet time at a decent hour.
For now, I’ll be typing with my eyes closed…or napping with my eyes – and ears – open (while cooking dinner).