Posts tagged sleeping
Anybody who follows me on twitter will be all to aware of the nightmare bedtime and nights we’ve had with MasterB over the last two years. 2 Years! I can’t believe he is 2 now and you know what *whispers* I think we might have finally cracked it
You wouldn’t think that this rather angelic looking toddler would be responsible for such trouble would you? But seriously… The little darling turned into a complete devil at bedtime, up until very recently I couldn’t leave his room before he fell asleep otherwise he went crazy. This is one kamikaze kid, without a thought for safety he would throw himself out of his cot or scream the house down if he even sensed you had left the room. For a child with vision and hearing problems, it still amazes me how he just “knew” when you left and would wake up instantly from his sleep and start crying. Bedtime usually took at least an hour of sitting on his bedroom floor!
Just a few months back we were still at the point where we couldn’t even put him in his cot and I would have to wait for him to fall asleep on me downstairs before carefully carrying him upstairs and placing him in his cot. The lovely Fi from Childcare Is Fun helped me immensely through this nightmare and we did finally get him to sleep in his cot but it’s probably taken another 4 months to be able to leave his room.
Tonight (as we have done for a WHOLE WEEK now), I placed MasterB in his cot, said goodnight and walked out of his room. Then I got into bed with MissB for 15 minutes to chat before she goes to sleep. Within minutes MasterB was asleep, no crying…just a bit of chatting to himself before falling asleep. What’s even more amazing is that he has even slept from 7pm – 6:30am most nights without us having to get up to him in the night!
I cannot begin to describe how it feels to have a week of unbroken sleep after 2 years of disturbed nights! I feel like I’m on a permanent sugar high at the moment I don’t know what has finally changed but maybe he really has finally just learnt to sleep at last. Whatever it is – I am one very very grateful mummy
Is it just me, or do all little angels suddenly get a whiff of the little devil about them as soon as the ‘bed time’ words are mentioned? In my experience, some children are nocturnal beings, coming alive the more tired mummy and daddy become! It may seem amusing right now, but the funny side soon sours as 9pm becomes 10pm, 11pm and so on. Many youngsters will happily trot off to bedfordshire at the required time, only to trot out again and again. We can’t all have Supernanny on speed dial, so here are a few lessons I have learned that may assist in a decent nights sleep for children and parents alike.
A child’s bedroom is the very first space of their own. They have all their toys and games and books in their room, yet it can still seem daunting, especially for those not long out of their cot, to be spending so much time apart from their parents. Making a big deal right from the start about how grown up they are in their first big bed in a room all of their very own, can help the transition from sleeping near mummy, to being an independent sleeper. Allowing them to have a say in choosing the wallpaper or paint colour, their duvet set and even their bed, will help to make them feel grown up and take a sense of ownership in their bedroom, for a wide choice of beds for the whole family click here. Even if you have a toddler that has no interest whatsoever in helping choose the design of their bedroom, lets face it, for one so young interior design is not really as interesting as Peppa Pig (oink oink), you may still like to suggest they arrange their toys on the shelves, the bed, or on top of the drawers for example. The main aim is to get the message across that this room is theirs, and that means they are very grown up!
Helping a child wind down at the end of the day, but well before bedtime will also help them relax and become a sleepy head as opposed to a mad head! Television, rowdy games, even music can stimulate your child to such a degree that their little minds are not relaxed enough for sleep at bedtime. A quiet hour before they head to bed, with nothing much happening, should make them less keen to stay up past bedtime. The old favourites of a warm drink, a story and a snuggle can work wonders, but do these all before bed, not in bed, this should help the relaxation process.
A regular bedtime and also waking up time, helps a child set their own body clock, try not to disturb this regular pattern if you can help it, that way, the body tells the child it’s sleepy time, not just the parent! This means, no late nights at the weekend. It will only undo any good work that has already been achieved throughout the week, sending their little body clock into overdrive and sending you back to square one!
If at all possible, try sparing a little time before bed to have a quality one to one chat with your child, especially if they are having trouble sleeping and are of school age, it may be that something is troubling them and preventing them from being able to fall asleep. Lots of cuddles while talking can help to get to the bottom of any little problems they may be having that you are unaware of.
When bedtime finally comes around, the milk has been drunk, the last trip to bathroom is over with and the last story has been read, tuck your little person into bed with a kiss and leave the room. Never have bright lights left on overnight, if your child doesn’t like the dark a dim night-light should suffice to banish the monsters that sometimes loom in the corners of the bedroom!
If, or should I say when, your child pops their little face round the living room door, take their hand gently, tell them it is bedtime and take them back to bed, do not get into conversation with them at this point, for the child is a cunning manipulator at this time of night and before you know it you will be in the middle of trying to explain why the sky is blue or why next door’s doggy sometimes licks it’s own…you get the picture!
Each time your child gets up, take their hand and lead them back to bed, no talking! No matter how many times you have to do it, if you are strong enough to ignore the pleas, the cries, the questions and sometimes even the tantrums, and repeatedly return them to their bed, without engaging with them, you should hopefully find that after several nights of this, your child will get the message and begin to spend the whole night in their own bed…which means you get to spend the whole night in yours too!
This is a sponsored guest post from Bedstar
No action shots tonight, Mr B was dead to the world the minute he finished his milk. It’s rare that I get sleepy cuddles now they are both growing up so I can’t resist making the most of them
Little bug has crashed out on me. And yes I know he is wearing a pink sleeping bag but I couldn’t see the point of buying new ones when MissB’s are still useable. He only sleeps in it so who will ever know (well apart from the fact I’ve just announced it on here lol)