Bedtime in our house is at 8pm. However it is always a surprise for my son every single night that we have to go to bed. Really? Literally every night we have to go to bed. It’s not like I ever skip a day here and there of sleep to confuse him. I even have a set time so he doesn’t forget. It never works. SURPRISE! IT’S BEDTIME!..Whoa! Where did that come from?!
I love this child with all of my heart, but he is a little demon when it comes to bedtime. He is 8 years old, but when it comes to this, he throws 3 year old temper tantrums. Seriously kid, I get it. I get grumpy at night also, but if someone told me to go to bed, I wouldn’t question it. Going to bed will be the quickest action you see me do all day. Children hate bedtime, though. They feel like they will miss something if they go to bed. The only thing they’ll miss is awesome slumber and some really wicked dreams. They don’t understand that perspective of it though.
If my son doesn’t go to sleep before I fall asleep, then it won’t happen. Believe me, I have accidentally tried it. I fell asleep before he did once and I woke up at 2am to the sounds of my son watching TV. My son has always fought me on this since he was a baby. I don’t care how long I rocked him, once his body touched those cool crib sheets, he was wide awake..again. As a toddler, he rarely took naps. Even when he started daycare, they had a hell of a time with trying to get him down for nap time.
With my son being 8 years old, you would think that I would have found solutions for a smoother transition to bedtime. However, I sadly have not mastered this yet. I feel like I have tried so many tactics. I’ve tried no electronics for some time prior to bedtime, a glass of milk, story time, saying our prayers to keep the monsters away, and tickle time. I’ve tried so many different things to ease bedtime onto my son. I even tried a race to get dressed for bed and dancing while brushing teeth. They work for a little while until he gets bored with them. Who knows..
I wish I could end this blog on a good note as if I had actually found the answers to this problem. However, that’s not always the case. Sometimes, we don’t have solutions, that’s the reality of parenthood. We just have to try the best we can regardless and take each frown one day at a time. I’m sure he’ll just grow into a stage of wanting to go to bed on his own one day. Until then, I will continue to love him through his disappointments of bedtime surprises every night.