Bedtime, some days it’s fondly referred to as best-time. The time of day that includes tons of hugs, extra kisses and all the I love you’s (even when you were sure they were going to kill each other earlier in the day)
With my first kid, I would read him a story, give him a bath, and walk walk walk him to sleep with the occasional nursing session in there. It was exhausting, and since J and I were night people it usually didn’t start until 11pm or even midnight.
Along came Kiwi, and wrestling 2 kids to bed. Pajamas, drinks, brushed teeth, baths, a diaper change or 2. I was wiped out and just wanted to lay down, sorry kids I can’t see straight to read you a story.
Baby number 3. My perfect sleeper, I’d put a fresh diaper on, pajamas and put her in her crib and boom she’d be out. The other kids, brush your teeth, put on pajamas, there’s school in the morning so no time for a bath, yes my ultra-bright kindergartener you can read for a bit.
My perfect sleepers daddy then got a job that required a 5:30am or even sooner wake-up’s. This means we need to be in bed by 10 at the latest, some nights that meant we barely had a chance to say ‘hey’. No problem, we’ll move dinner to 5, bedtime to 7, the older 2 dress themselves and don’t swallow the toothpaste anymore. And thus was born ‘Go to bed.’
My little guy arrived and we were well established in this routine. The perfect sleeper was still transitioning out of her crib and our bed and into her own. The older two never argued about bedtime, they still wanted to keep the lights on for a few extra minutes but there wasn’t the constant requests for drinks of water or just coming out to see what we were doing.
The perfect sleeper. Was having none of it. In her mind, even today, she’s the baby. She needs a drink, she needs help with her pajamas even though she has been dressing herself for over 2 years. Then came ‘the toe toe tuck’. Yeah, I haven’t been tucking my kids in. I check to see that they are asleep and turn off their lights but never tucked them in after the hugs and kisses and Partridge family style I love you’s were done.
Bear even knows to stop nursing and go snuggle his daddy so I can tuck Mimi’s toe toes.
At the end of the day we still get this. So don’t beat yourself up over not singing that special song, or forgetting their PJ’s in the washer. Sleep is what is important and sleep is what we get.