30 October 2011

Your Schedule Isn't My Schedule

Recently I realigned the boys's schedules. While I'm not a big fan of schedules in general I like to have an idea of when they're going o go to bed and wake up. Everything else...meh.

For the longest time I've wanted my evenings free. It was time for me. Jake would typically be at work, the boys would be in bed and I'd have the house to myself to clean, crochet, blog, or whathaveyou.

But then Aedyn stopped going to bed. Or rather, on days he napped he wouldn't go to bed. On days he didn't nap, he'd go to bed, sleep for 2 hours and then be back up until 2 or 3am.

That was when I thought that "everyone" knew what they were talking about when "they" said that kids should go to bed around 7:30-8pm. (Jaron was only sleeping 2 hour stretches at that point, so it really didn't matter when he "went to bed.") But it just wasn't working for us!

I realized that Aedyn has always done better when I've paid attention to his sleep cues, instead of putting him on a schedule. Why did I think that needed to stop once he turned two? Why would I do what's right for my unique family in everything else, but try and fit in a box on this one?

I can tell you without a doubt that it's because I want to do the right thing. I want him to be a well rested, happy little boy. I knew that I might mess him up in many ways, but I wanted to get the sleep thing right. Well...oops.

So I started listening to him.

For the most part, we all get up in the mornings around 10am...it's wonderful! Sunday morning are hard since we have to be out of the house by 8:15, but that should change in the next week or two. We rarely do anything in the morning, but I don't see a problem with that. If it ever becomes an issue we can deal with it then.

 Jaron has finally worked out his kinks napwise and takes one nap now. From about 2/3 pm to 4/5 pm. Aedyn still fights his nap, but if I can time a playground trip after lunch just right, he'll fall asleep without a fuss on the way home.

Bedtime for Jaron is about 9pm with Aedyn following at 10:30pm. I'm still trying to get into a groove of putting them both to bed by myself. Aedyn really wants to lay down with us when I put Jaron to bed, but he can't be still. Jaron, of course, doesn't want to sleep if Aedyn's playing around. When Jake's home he runs interference while I get Jaron to sleep.

I may or may not have some time before Jake gets home on the nights he works, but now that I'm getting an occasional break with both of them napping that time is  not as big of a deal.

So that's it. Your schedule isn't my schedule and my schedule isn't that person's over there. It is what is. We're all happier, we've had fewer temper tantrums overall (Aedyn is still 2...), and everyone is getting better sleep.

Because, believe it or not, when Aedyn went to bed at 7:30 or 8 or 8:30 or 9 he would inevitably wind up awake and tossing and turning in our bed, waking up Jaron and causing general chaos at 3 am. Now that he goes to bed at 10? He comes in our room about 8am and cuddles up to go back to sleep until 10am. Perfect for this family of night owls. I just pray that none of our future children are early birds!!

Have you ever gone against the commonly accepted "best thing"? How did it work for you? Do you think I'm crazy for letting my kids stay up so late?

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  1. Thank you for posting this.  When I worked nights my kids would go to bed late, still do sometimes, but it worked for us to all get some rest.  I remember going to library story time and some moms were talking about bedtimes, when I mentioned 10 or 10:30, I instantly felt like a terrible mother.  They all looked at me crazy and mentioned their 6/7 bedtimes.  I tried to get there, but it never worked.  The best I could do was 8/9 once daylight savings time came in the winter and  Elijah would associate bedtime with the darkness outside and he would sleep earlier for those few months.  I only worry when Elijah starts pre-school next year if I will need to start getting him to bed earlier now.

  2. Your post makes me jealous because I used to loooove to stay up late and sleep in. But having to get Logan to daycare and fight traffic to get to work by 8am means that we are up by 630 every morning, weekend or not, lol. I think it's really nice that you can have this schedule now, I would just worry about changes once Aedyn reaches school age.... but, you still have a couple years before you have to think about that. Enjoy it!!


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