Sunday, August 1, 2010

The One Who Keeps Me Up at Night

Believe it or not it’s not this one:


It’s this one:


I fear it’s time for Anderson to stop napping. I’m fighting this. Oh, how I’m fighting this. His naps have been sheer, flawless perfection for more than a year. 1:00 PM-4:00 PM. Three hours of him sleeping. Three hours of me loving my life and being uber productive. Without shame I fully admit naptime is my favorite time of day.

The Dreadful Signs

*About once a week Anderson wakes up way too early. By way too early I mean during the hideous six A-M hour.

*Once, that early hour was five A-M.

*Most nights he doesn’t fall asleep until 1-2 hours after we put him to bed… which can mean 11:00 PM! He’s so good. He stays in his crib, even though he can climb out. There’s the occasional request for a drink, to be re-tucked in, or to restart the music (yep, he makes it through an entire 70 minute lullaby CD) but otherwise he just quietly lays there, patiently waiting for sleep to come.

*Once in a blue moon he skips his nap.

*On those rare occasions he goes to bed two hours early, at 7:30 PM, and falls right asleep.

*All this has been going on for weeks.

Then there was last night. We started the bedtime routine at 9:30 PM. He was settled by 9:45. We heard him until 11:15… singing, talking, making the occasional request. At one point he informed me, “I… am… sick. I have take medicine.” That one was new. I laughed at his creativity and told him he wasn’t sick, he was just learning how to make excuses.

We finally all fell asleep around 11:30 PM.

At 3:20 AM I got up to feed Max. At 3:30 Anderson was awake again (that’s 4 hours of sleep people), asking where the sun was and if he could go to church. We ignored him. We visited him. We brought him water. We ignored him. We re-tucked him in. We ignored him. At 5:00 AM I stood above his crib pleading with him to sleep as long as the sun did. He sat discouraged in the middle of his crib, shoulders hunched, head down and said to me, “Mama, it… too… hard go nigh-nights.” My heart broke. The kid put up with an hour and a half of sheep counting at bedtime, then another hour and a half in the middle of the night. We’ve all been there. When you just can’t sleep, you just can’t sleep.  Insomnia sucks. I felt guilty for letting him sleep so much during the day. That’s gotta be it, right? I started to cry. He sweetly apologized. My heart broke again.

I rocked him for 30 minutes. He sat peacefully on my lap. Wide awake.

At 5:30 AM, we gave up and watched Cars.

Before you tell me I’m in denial of the obvious no-nap solution, read on.

The Wait, Maybe Not… Signs

*He almost always goes right down for his nap at 1:00 PM. I don’t hear a peep from him until 4:00.

*On days he doesn’t nap (Sundays… thank you 1:00 PM church), he is Cranky McCrankster by 5:30 PM.

*He falls asleep in the car in the afternoon.

*He’s only 2!!! He’s not even that 2. Only 2 and 3 1/2 months. That’s a LONG way from school, which is my next daily break right?

SOS! As in, Save Our Sleep!

P.S. It’s now 6:03 AM. He is proudly exclaiming, “The sun is up! The sun is up!” Poor kid’s been waiting for that all night.


Harley King said...

Who is spiking our sippy cup with Red Bull?

So tigh-tighs.

Crystal said...

This is such a hard transition. worth crying over really. Kate gave up her nap around 20 months old. She wakes up at 6:00 am or earlier every morning too. But we can usually count on an easy bedtime- her sleeping by 9:00pm. Welcome to real parenthood is what I say. this is when it gets really hard. And be sure to occasionally use your new productive hours 9- 11pm for only watching television.

Mom said...

Such cute pictures of the boys. Anders is REMARKABLE about trying to go night-night. I think it's time to say bye-bye to afternoon naps and introduce a shorter afternoon "quite time."

Carter said...

You pick your poison, I guess. You have the rough nights, but you have that glorious nap routine.

One tip: put that CD on "repeat all tracks." I do it every single night. Before I go to bed I'll go in and turn it off. Although I often forget, and, no big deal.

Anonymous said...

Oh my word, I LOVE that picture of Anderson!!!! I am still as obsessed with him as I was back when he was a baby. Can you please bring him with you when you come visit in September? I miss him. Such a good boy to try and go nigh nights so hard. I love that he said that. "it's to hard to go nigh, nights" Melt my heart!! Ya, I'd say as sucky as it is lose the nap and have a nice long quite time in the afternoon. Oh the stages...we're trying to transition to one nap and day and struggling.

Claudia said...

Uugh. The sleep wars. Adayla is the same age, and I insist on the nap. I also insist that she is in her bed before 8pm - like 7:30 if I can manage (she can try to make excuses all she wants, but she's in there for the night, I don't go back). And she stays in her room until after 6am. Our family gets up early, so everyone is up before 7am.
Anyway, that's just our routine - you, of course, get to set your own, because YOU ARE THE PARENT, and YOU GET TO DECIDE (repeat it as a mantra, I do).

hwangberg said...

I feel for you wendy. It's hard enough dealing with the short amount of sleep a newborn allows. Then add other children to the mix and it's a wonder moms can function at all. Good luck with Anderson, unfortunately the ending of naps can happen anytime from before 2 years old up until kindergarten. I wish parenting was more predictible sometimes.

So this is on a total side note. You know the word verification word I have to type in order to post this on your blog? Well for this it is "flair" and I thought that was very appropriate for you blog. You have flair Wendy :)

Szobonya Bercel said...

We have the same "problem" with Bercel, though he turned 3 already... His naptime is usually from 14:00-16:30 - so its obvious, that he's not sleepy around 8 o'clock...
But I'm not ready yet to give up nap-time. Not to mention,l that if he doesn't take a nap, he is just sooooooo cranky around 5-6 pm...

What we do is: we start our bed-time routine (bath,scripture study,bedtime-story, SLEEP) around 8, and he usually goes to sleep by 9, 9:30 pm. He's not doing anything bad, just lying on the bed with his eyes open - BUT! What makes it worse for us, tha since he's in a big boy bed (since he turned 2 and started to climbed OUT of the crib) he wants somebody to be with him until he falls a sleep... and sometimes it takes an hour! I know... it's baaaaaaaad. BUT. I put Aron to sleep at night (which takes about 5-10 minutes) and Oliver has the pleasure to take Bercel... hehhe... :)

My advise: at this point, you cannot really have a choice. either way you have problems to solve (eg: no naptime, but cranky kid from 5 pm, or a boy with insomnia at night... it's tough... let us know what solutions you found out!! :)
Keep up, you' re a great mom, and in the end, that's all that matters... :)

Jessica Taggart said...


Although I have no children of my own, I believe I know the solution to the problem: Simply ignore him. My mother would put me down in her bed and then quickly fall fast asleep. I would wait until she was really out of it and then I would go make all kinds of trouble. My favorite was when I would get into her lipstick. Usually she was so "moved" by how adorable I was upon her waking up with lipstick all over my face and body that she couldn't really get mad. Oh wait...Anderson is a dude. That won't work. Crap...

Brittany said...

Wendy your boys are so adorable! I still can't get over how much hair he has! Lucky baby! Mine's almost 1years old and still BALD!
I'm with ya sista... it totally stinks when they stop napping! I remember when mine did. I made Gage have "quite time" while Jake slept. I still make my older boys have quite time or play outside together while the other two sleep. The good thing is with no naps comes earlier bedtime. My kids go to bed at 7:30 pm. And are up at 6 regardless the hour they go to sleep at night... so 7:30 pm it is! :)

Sarah S said...

Wendy, I'm so sorry!! I was in official mourning for months when Eli stopped napping (he stopped as soon as he turned 2, it was horrible). I was exhausted from Charlie not sleeping well at night and then to not get that afternoon break at least... it seemed so, so unfair. I think that's still why I stay up so dang late every night - i savor the time to myself sooo much. Which I know isn't feasible when you have a newborn waking up in the night. Hang in there Wendy!!

Kaija said...

that top picture of max is ADORABLE!

Codi said...

This is the story of my girls. Just right after they turned 2! I hated it also. I gave up on naps and started putting them to bed a 6:00 or 6:30. They still sleep until 8am. I had to make sure they didn't fall asleep around 3:00 and still about once or twice a week they would take a nap (Willa still does). They never fought taking naps and still to this day they both go down for a nap with ease when we need them to because we are going to be out late. I found I liked this much better then having them awake until 11:00pm. We still do quiet time, only it is earlier so that they won't fall asleep if I don't want them too.

Good Luck! You'll find what works for you.

Ming said...

I don't know what to tell you. The hard thing about all this advice telling you to skip the nap and put him to bed super early is that means it cuts into dad time. At least I know around here if I were to put Jack down before 8pm he'd rarely see his father. Good luck!

janaemadsen said...

danielle still really needs a nap or we put her to bed at 7. also- I wouldn't give up naps get wonky with another baby. i would still keep putting him down for a nap or quiet time anyway.
I like to use threats with danielle- and watching shows while I sleep.
oops, I guess I shouldn't admit that.

Julie Broadbent said...

Been there! We stopped giving Trey naps when he had trouble going to bed before 10pm. He was almost three by then. Now a year later, I still have to be careful about afternoon car rides. That is pretty much the only time he will fall asleep now. But if he naps for even 30 minutes, he is up till 11. Ugh.

I have adjusted and I think I like the no nap/earlier bedtime routine now.

anna banana said...

I think you should just cut his nap shorter. Wake him up (ahhh...terrible words) after just a hour or hour and half nap. That way you will still get productivity during the day and a boy who will sleep at night.

Another thing I found with my boys is a need for an activity in the afternoon, a walk, aprk trip or errand will help make him more tired for bed. Good luck!