The Great Nap Experiment

After weeks of beating our heads against the wall, we are once again trying something new when it comes to sleep and Harrison. Today is also the first day of track practice and there is no coincidence that these two events are happening simultaneously. Track season has always been a little rough on me – even before we had children – and now that we have two little ones in the house, I can only imagine what the next few months might be like. Ben leaves for school between 7:30 and 7:45 each morning. Now, if he (I) is (am) lucky, he’ll be home by 5:30 or 5:45 each night. Perhaps there are other stay-at-home-mamas (or papas) out there that pull longer hours than that, but for me those are long days. And that doesn’t even take into account what my days and nights will look like once meets start. But I digress….the point here is sleep. What else do I write/think/stress about?

No big surprise, but we are still struggling when it comes to getting good Z’s. Last night, for the second time in three weeks, I managed to get four and a half hours in a row. That was a big deal and quite nice. I am sincerely hoping for more nights like that and maybe even some with even longer stretches. It was made possible, mostly, by Harrison managing to stay in his room all night (well, from about 8 or 8:30 until 6:30, so yes – all night). It was also made possible by Raegan going back to just one (instead of two or three) mid-night feeding(s). Now if only I knew what made him decide to stay put and her not nurse as often so I could push “repeat” again and again every night from here on out, I would be one happy girl. As it is, my fingers and toes are crossed and prayers are said that we get to have that all again (and again and again).

So, with a slightly renewed body and mind, we are embarking on a grand experiment today. I am not forcing Harrison to stay in his room to take a nap. Instead I am asking him continuously if he is ready for sleep so that he can decide when and if it is time for a nap. Now I am fully aware that a two-and-a-half-year-old isn’t likely to concede to sleep any time soon. But I am also so totally sick of battling him every single day to go to sleep that I’m just over it. None of us will survive track if we have to spend 2-3 hours each afternoon fighting just to get an hour or so of nap.

This is brand new territory that is more than a little scary for me. I’ve never been one to just let my kiddo go until he crashes, and based on his energy level, crashing may come for me before it does for him. And who knows….this may last all of today. I really have no idea. I just know that this is one tactic we haven’t tried, so why not. Based on how poorly things went at the end of last week when I was trying to force him to nap, I don’t really see how it could get much worse.

At the moment Harrison is playing semi-solo and Raegan is in our room sleeping. Or maybe sleeping. I did hear her squawk a couple minutes ago, but now it seems to be quiet again. Nope. Take that back. Still squawking. And Harrison just told me (again) that he is “Not ready” for a nap yet. So, yes. My kids have some great aversion to sleep. Since I have yet to discover what to do about that, I guess I just have to roll with it. Here’s hoping this experiment ends well (and with everyone getting more sleep).

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2 thoughts on “The Great Nap Experiment

  1. I'll start working on a candy infused with valerian root or some other homeopathic sleep aid. Then once Harrison realizes he always gets sleepy when he eats candy he'll not want to eat candy any more either! It's a win win!

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