Lying on my back on the floor of my daughters’ bedroom, staring up at the wall as I wait for them to drift off to sleep, one in a toddler bed on my right, and one in a toddler bed on my left. I have to wait until the two-year-old is truly out because as soon as I move to leave the room I hear, “Mommy!” coming from her corner of the room and she immediately starts to stir when the hallway light hits her face. I know because it has happened a million times before and so I might as well just lie here and wait. It may be awhile.
The soft swishing of blankets sliding on sheets and the lulling lullaby of the sound machine fill the room. There is no audible heavy breathing yet so I know they are still awake, but their eyes are closed. At least that is a start.
Bedtime can be so challenging for parents. You are exhausted after a long day of work and school schedules, homemaking, chauffeuring, breaking up fights and cleaning up messes. You are so ready for your kids to just go right to sleep. No questions, no arguments, no asking for water or a bedtime story, no whining, no stirring, no wandering out into the living room, dragging their blankets and teddy bears when you literally just tucked them in.
“Just lay down and go to sleep!” Period.
It’s tempting to be frustrated when bedtime is a struggle when your kids still need you and you are just so DONE with being needed. You want some alone time to unwind and relax. Even just a few minutes of quiet before you yourself doze off in the easy chair from pure exhaustion. Is that really too much to ask?
(To read the rest of this article and see my tips for easing the bedtime struggle, click here)
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