The past several weeks have been tough at our house during the bedtime hours. I haven’t been getting much sleep and Huff the Tot has decided that she’s hungry (even though she just ate) or thirsty (even though she just downed water), or needs to go check on baby brother right as we’re closing her bedroom door. Convenient, huh?
Because of this, the hours of 8:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. typically go the same way EVERY. SINGLE. NIGHT:
Put child in bed.
Hear knocking on child’s door.
Exchange look with Huff the Hubs. Stay quiet. Children, much like deer, react wildly to noise.
Hear knocking again followed by, “Momma? You dere?”
Let out exasperated sigh.
Try not to strangle Huff the Hubs when he says, “She wants you!”
Tell child to go back to bed.
Child throws self on floor in an emotional breakdown that could rival Britney Spears’ mental upheaval of 2008.
Read child one more book.
Put child in bed.
Repeat until child or parents pass out from exhaustion.
Something had to give. I needed this child to go to sleep at a decent hour. If she wasn’t going to sleep, I wasn’t going to sleep. Which sucked because I have been getting up 2-4 times a night with Huff the Babe.
I had heard some good things about a new, revolutionary book that helped kids fall asleep FAST. I decided it was time to try it!
We went to Barnes and Noble after dinner one night and I just knew this would work!
I told Huff the Tot that Mommy bought her a new book and we would read it together in her room just before bed. Look how excited she is! So cute, so innocent. (Do NOT let this picture fool you. She pulls you in with her cuteness and then becomes the Destroyer of Rem Sleep.)*
We sat down and read. There is a page at the very beginning that tells the parent how to read the story. Certain words are bolded and you’re supposed to emphasize those words. Others are italicized and should be read with a slooow, callllming voice.
I started reading.
Wow! I thought, Look at her eyes! She’s blinking very slowly! Its working!
A few pages in…
The thumb is in! Yessss…. Momma’s gonna sleep GOOD tonight!
A few more pages in…
Did she just fall asleep? Oh, her eyes are opening. THIS BOOK IS GOLD!
By the time I got to “The End”, Huff the Tot was snuggled with her blanket, sucking her thumb, and asking me to turn on her music (toddler speak for, “Go away.”) I kissed her goodnight, turned on her music, and practically skipped the entire way out of her door.
Just as I was about to tell Huff the Hubs we could FINALLY catch up on the latest season of Gotham, I heard it.
Knock, knock, knock.
Knock, knock, “Momma?”
I put her back in bed. Her room was quiet. All was right with the world. Then I saw this on the monitor:
Cut to 10:45 p.m. and she’s still awake. I didn’t let that faze me, though. The next night, we tried again. This time, we sat in the rocking chair. I rocked as I read and I could tell she was getting sleepy. I put her in bed, half-asleep, and breathed a sigh of relief when I closed the door and heard nothing. Twenty minutes later I’m calming a crying-like-a-banshee toddler.
I tried a third night to no avail.
So, Imma say this was a Try It FAIL. Well, so long, Sleep. It was nice knowing ya.^
Have you tried this book? Did it work for you?
*Calm down, Keyboard Judges. I love my kids. But I’m a better momma when I get quality sleep.
^What HAS worked for us is allowing Huff the Tot to pick out a few books to keep in her bed. We tell her, “You may lay in bed and look at books while you try to fall asleep. you may not get out of bed. But you can look at books.” THAT has cut down on so many bedtime tantrums. I don’t know why, but I am not complaining!