The (non) Napping House

It’s summer and I’m all about flexing the schedule, but 10:30 p.m. bedtimes just do not fly in my house. My three and a half year old has been steadily creeping her “fall asleep time” later and later. We put her in bed close to 8 p.m. or so, but lately she’s been coming back out, having to pee, needing one more hug, one more kiss, one more snuggle, having a bad dream and on and on until 10 p.m. or after. Finally, she’d fall asleep. Problem was there was no time left for me time. Or for US time.

And don’t get me started on nap times. That girl does not want to take a nap. There’s just nothing like a three year old (whose eyes are crossing because she’s so tired) crying and telling you she’s not tired. Then she’d fall asleep for two hours. So we felt like she still needed the nap. So here was the schedule – she’d wake up around 5:30 a.m. on her own, take a one to two hour nap, then not be able to fall asleep until 10 p.m. This just was not working for us.

We’re a family of four and since our other child doesn’t nap anymore, naps kind of slow us down. I know that’s not always a bad thing. So we decided a few days ago to get rid of the nap. Maybe having her be more tired in the evening will help her get to bed more quickly. Maybe she’ll sleep a little later? It all remains to be seen. The transition will be hard. And maybe since it’s summer we will be flexible. Who cares if she takes a nap every third day, or when she really feels like she needs one. There’s a lot to be said for just going with the flow and following the child.

It seems so weird that we might have two children that no longer nap. Are we never going to be a napping house again? Do you think we’ll ever be able to talk the two of them into a nap after a long hot day hiking all morning? Oh, I love to nap! And to nap next to a sleeping child, that is just the best! So I’m hoping that eliminating the nap this summer will help with bedtime and give us even more summer hours to enjoy together as a family. It’s been an absolutely fabulous summer so far! Now if I could just sleep past 5:30 a.m. . . .

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