My children are horrible at sleep. Like seriously, horrible. A few weeks or months back (who knows anymore) I would say Flynn wasn’t horrendous. He liked sleep, took long, beautiful naps and didn’t run away from bedtime. He did still wake-up during the night, but on the scale from 1-10, with 1 being worst sleeper ever and 10 being Ferber’s children – Flynn was a 5. Okay maybe 4. Nola, well many know about Notorious Nola. She doesn’t need sleep. Lately, she has started to be a little fussy if she doesn’t take a nap, but really before the girl would just party all day and late into the night, then sleep in in the morning. In my bed.
Between the move, me being the only person home during bedtime almost all nights, trips back home, and our good friend Daylight Savings time (oh and the loss of the Paci) sleep is pretty miserable. Flynn refusing naps, Nola napping when she felt like it and bedtime being a complete disaster with me trying to rub Flynn’s back for 900 years while Nola roamed the house unsupervised. Most nights consist of me floating between my bed, Flynn’s bed and the rare occasion Nola was in her bed – I’d make stops there too. I don’t think I had more than 3 hours straight…well actually since Flynn was born, but definitely not in the past few months.
And so I had enough. I don’t care if my kids sleep in my bed, in their bed or in the tub. They just need to sleep. And I also would like some naps. So I decided to suck it up and make a plan. Upon my return from a two week stint with my parents, I did what I do best. I made an excel tracker. I haven’t made one of these since 2013 when I would make them often to track the student data and I love excel and formulas and sortable filters. What – you don’t? I also decided to keep a strict routine – or as strict as I can get. (yes that sentence just summed up why my kids are probably terrible sleepers. That and I like to believe Nola is a genius and geniuses don’t sleep). So for a little less than a week every night at 6 PM they bathe, we (Nola, Flynn and I) read books in the kids room, and I fight them to sleep. It takes FOREVER. Like no joke one night it was 9:15 before they were both in asleep. THREE HOURS AND FIFTEEN MINUTES with more than two thirds of that being laying with them or rocking Nola. That is multiple hours of being like why don’t we still have pacifiers and why did I stop nursing Nola. And why don’t we all just go back to playing until you both pass out because I seriously might lose it.
I wish I could report that things are improving, but really they are not. Flynn wakes up between 5:30-6:00 every morning (and pre Daylight Savings we were at 7:45 wake up). Nola used to get nearly 11 hours of sleep (you know from 11:30 PM-10:30 AM), but now is getting way less than that. They both fall asleep at nap time, but a lot of that requires planning a morning activity that has us driving home at nap time or wrestling with Flynn until he passes out. Many naps have been shorter than the time it took to get them to sleep. Oh and night wakings, the thing I dislike the most, have increased. A lot. I guess it’s just reminding me of life with a newborn. Dear Lord, there will soon be a newborn.
But I will continue on with the plan and use my trusty old excel tracker not because it will produce any reliable data, but because I really love excel. Like a lot. I will stick with the routine and in a few weeks, we can all have a fabulous party at 7 PM sharp (because my kids will sleeping by then) where we sit around and analyze my data and ultimately just conclude that the art of sleep was lost on my children and one day in the future – we will all sleep … until they are teenagers and sneak out of the house and I have to go find them. (Sorry Mom) (PS – Nola is currently whining in there – off to check that box in my tracker).