Okay, folks. Here we go, embarking on yet another adventure in parenting betterment.
Charlie has almost entirely stopped taking naps. Naps used to happen when I would (EXTENDED BREASTFEEDINGALERT) nurse him to sleep. That’s just how he always went down and when I officially finally weaned him, the afternoon naps were no longer guaranteed. For a while, I could plan our days to end up with us driving home from somewhere at about 1:00 . . . this would result in him falling asleep on the way home. Nap time would ensue, blog posts would get written, work would get done, and I would be caught up on the current season of Bones.
Well, since we recently switched Charlie to a forward-facing seat, the car-naps too have ended. There’s just too much cool stuff to see, now that he’s looking ahead, and will still be awake after 45 minutes of driving around.
I know that I’ve probably got some readers thinking, “I don’t get it. You put them in their bed, tell them it’s nap time, and shut the door.”
I get that, but that’s just not how we do stuff around here. Our house has developed into a pretty open-door-type household, and for us to just shut Charlie in his room after 2 and a half years of nursing him to sleep and laying down with him at bed-time would make it seem more like a punishment than an institution of structure.
We’ve been parenting in the way we felt would work best for our family, and it’s simply time to adapt to the changes.
Today, at 1:00, I laid down in bed with Charlie, a book, and a bowl of goldfish. After about an hour and a half of him not falling asleep, I told him he could get out of bed, but he needed to stay in his room and play with his toys for 30 minutes.
(I’d like to clarify that, in the above picture, the bowl has a few chocolate chips in it, Charlie is wearing socks on his hands because I hadn’t yet given in and turned the heater on, and I am NOT trying to get him down for a nap, because that would a terribly stupid way to do so. It’s just the only recent picture I had of him on his bed in the afternoon. Also, I turned the heater on shortly after taking that picture.)
I’m pretty sure he made it for 30 minutes. I forgot to set a timer because I’m awesome like that. I did, however, get most of this blog post written and an important email sent out, so it wasn’t a total waste. This will happen again tomorrow, and the tomorrow after that, and so on and so forth. I’m hoping that, eventually, as he gets more used to lying down in bed, he’ll be able to relax enough to fall asleep. He needs a nap. I know he needs one, because at about 6 PM he gets suuuuuuper cranky and tired. If he falls asleep at 6 PM, though, he will absolutely wake up at 3 AM, totally ready for the day.
Nobody wants that.
So we will soldier on, lying down in bed with books and goldfish every afternoon. At the very least, I’m getting to lay down with my feet up for an hour, right?
As always, I’m totally open to advice, if you guys have it. Just keep in mind that my semi-crunchy-partial-hippie blood runs strong and free through my veins, the way that mid-90’s Cher song runs through your head after leaving the grocery store.