“Enjoy your sleep till the little one comes.”
“Welcome to sleepless nights.”
“Sleep is a thing of the past and you are never going to get that sleep again.”
These are few things which people used to say when I was expecting my first one. Luckily, she never bothered us for sleeping or eating or anything. She was a very good sleeper and a calm child. But when my second one was born, I remembered everything people used to say about sleepless nights with kids.
I used to rock her on my lap and every time, I put her down, she used to cry loudly. I tried to swing, rocking bassinet, rocking chair etc. but with her, nothing used to work.
So, I had a good sleeper and a bad sleeper.
Luckily, they both started sleeping nicely throughout the night by the time they were toddlers but there were still some tough times in between. Younger one would wake up in between and ask us if she could sleep with us till she was 8. Sometimes, she used to call us 4-5 times for some or the other reason.
Mom! I need water.
Mom! I heard something, I am scared! Can I sleep with you?
Dad! I am not feeling sleepy! Can I read a book?
Dad! This fan is making some noise, Can you fix it?
I think you got the idea. 🙂
Tips for babies –
Make the bed time a very soothing and calm ritual. Massage them, give them a bath, make them wear a soft cotton sleep suit and sing them a lullaby. Make sure they are not hungry and they are not uncomfortable in any way.
Tips for age 3+ kids-
I am sharing few ways which we tried to make the bed time ritual smooth and better. I am not saying these worked every time but mostly it worked.
- No late dinners– Avoid giving them food or anything to drink just before the bed. Heavy food just before sleep time is going to make them uneasy and of course going to keep them awake. On the other hand, make sure they are not hungry too as they will be getting up in between to bother you. Make sure to avoid too many carbs or sugar loaded food items at night too.
- No video games or TV– Do not allow any TV or video games just before sleep time. Reading is still a better option. It’s ok if they want to read a little before sleeping.
- Story time– My husband is the story teller in our house. He is the one who told bed time stories to our daughters every day when they were small. I am really bad at making up stories and he is really creative that way. He used to cook up imaginative stories and kids loved it. I still remember my elder one used to ask for a squirrel story every day. It was the same story every day and she used to laugh at the same thing every day too. Story time is a good sleep time ritual. You can even read a story from one of their favourite books.
- Talk to them– My daily ritual is to talk to both of them before bed and then tuck them and kiss good night. Try talking to your kids and asking them things about their school and other things they did with friends etc.
- Routine- There is no set routine till the time they start school. Make sure they do not sleep for too many hours during the day. Let them play and get tired for a good night’s sleep. Once the school starts, the set routine helps.
- Physical activity– Kids sleep better with a lot of good physical activity during the day.
Remember it’s a phase- Last but not least, remember that it’s a phase and you are not going to be sleep deprived for the rest of your life. Try sleeping when the baby sleeps and ask for help from family and friends. Our younger one is an incredible sleeper now. 🙂
[bctt tweet=”All kids are different and what worked for one might not work for another #Parenting” username=”Deepagandhi1″]
How do you put your kids to bed or what are your sleep time rituals or suggestions? Do share with other moms.
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