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Oct 08

Bedtime Battles

Julie has been a hot mess during bedtime the past two days (it’s taken close to three hours to get her to go to sleep after declaring bedtime).  UNHEARD of – I’ve never had trouble getting my kids to sleep.   Jessie always required a “routine” but it was reasonably short and she always fell asleep quickly enough.  Sam literally just drops when he’s tired, the challenge is making sure that he’s in jammies, teeth brushed, book read, etc before he conks out.  He’s fallen asleep under the table, in front of the rocking chair, on the couch, jammed in between the bed and the wall… he’s my easiest kid to put to sleep.

But Julie – oh, my Julie.

She nursed to sleep for four and a half years (it’s still a little scary to admit that, extended nursing was one of those things I just didn’t talk about, and I still dread the judgement).  Nursing to sleep was perfect – so easy and peaceful and took minutes to get her to doze off.  Now, she’s learning to fall asleep on her own, and it’s hard work.   I’m caught off guard, because this is my third child, and so often, with Julie, I find myself thinking – I should KNOW how to do this.  Maybe I remember doing this when Jessie gave up the pacifier?   Sam didn’t really have any issues dropping that before bed nursing session – it was a LOT harder to get him to stop during the day.  In retrospect, I think that’s why I didn’t really think all that much about Julie nursing at night, it took a few minutes, and didn’t seem like a big deal.  She never nursed during the day.

So here we are.  With a little girl who can’t/won’t fall asleep without hours of prep work.

I snuggled my little ones to sleep.  Jessie liked to be read and sung to as she drifted off, and Sam (unless he just conks out somewhere) still likes to snuggle up against Marc or I as he falls asleep.  Jessie has long since outgrown it, and Sam is getting there… but I always liked the process, and am in no rush to give it up with my youngest.  But after the past two nights of being up past eleven o’clock, and resorting to yelling at her before she finally falls asleep – I have to come up with a new plan.

Any suggestions?   Because seriously – this child needs a lot more sleep than she’s getting.


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