Sleep smackdown, part 2: The sleep deprivator
Why is it that the night before a big day at work, an early plane trip or other plans that really demand a good night's rest, your children won't allow it? It's like there's a voice inside them that says, "Tonight I need to wake up a couple of times to make sure Mommy and Daddy don't sleep well."
I've been burned by my 3-year-old waking up in the middle of the night and I've wrestled with her to stay in bed now that's she's out of her crib, but we've been on a roll of good sleeping lately. Moving into the big girl bed did help.
So the other night, when I went to bed knowing it was my last chance for good sleep for a few days, I had every hope that I would actually get it. And I so needed it. I've been sick for a week and I have some very long work days in front of me. Days when I'm sure to get only a few hours' sleep. To prepare, I went to bed at 9:30!
Still, it should have been no surprise at 2:50 a.m. when she screamed at me through the monitor. Nor at 4:50 a.m. when she did it again! The first time, it was like she woke up from a bad dream, so I just rubbed her back and tucked her in. The second time she said, "I never got my cuddle!" So I tucked her in and climbed in bed next to her. After a few minutes, I kissed her head and got up.
Maybe these tips on keeping your kid in bed can help. In the end, she knows how to melt my heart. As I walked away, I forgot about my lost sleep as she whispered, "Thank you, Mommy. I feel much better."
-- Amy Hollyfield