Monday, October 22, 2012

Nap time not going well?

little man sleeping

As my son is getting older naptime is becoming more and more of a struggle and I am not ready to give up the afternoon nap yet. Let me rephrase that – I am not ready for him to give up the afternoon nap yet. When he does not nap he gets a wee bit cranky/whiney and I just don’t want to deal with that 24/7.

So what to do?

Some days he needs me to lay down with him for a bit until he is ready to sleep. Some days he wants some privacy and he wants to read a story or two to himself before nap time. Some days he tells me that he is a big boy and he can put himself down for a nap… or he is too big for naps now. It varies from day to day.  But he usually ends up asleep as a result of any and all options.

And then there are those days that nothing seems to be going according to plan and I want to pull my hair out. Those days where I cannot seem to catch a break. When one or both of the boys are whining and crying and naptime is as elusive as a mega millions winning lottery ticket {oh how I wish} I get worn out really quickly. Those days are rough.

So what do I do?

I do not have an answer that will work for everyone. No one does. This is what works for me. I take a break and I walk away. I know it sounds silly and maybe even a little selfish. But on those days where my frustration level is at an all time high, I walk to my room, close the door, and take a deep breath. I take a mommy time-out until I am ready to get back out there. 

Usually my mommy time outs only last a couple minutes, but I need those couple of minutes to collect myself. Then after my mommy time out I go and manage one child at a time. I put down the baby for a nap and then work on getting my toddler to sleep. And even this doesn’t always do the trick. Some days nothing works and I simply tell my son that he needs to have some quiet playtime in his room until naptime is over.

When it is the baby not going to sleep there is no such thing as negotiations. He usually needs to be cuddled and snuggled until he is ready to sleep. So I pull out one of my soft structured baby carriers {right now I am favoring my ERGObaby carrier} and I do some baby wearing around the house. This usually works pretty well for me. When he starts to rub his eyes and he spends more time yawning than crying I try for the crib. Most of the time this works… sometimes it doesn’t.

So…. What do you do?

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