No, this book doesn't put me to sleep, like parenting books of the past have. It puts Babs to sleep. When I first got this book, I was flipping through it reading random sections because that's so helpful when reading a parenting book. Anyway, there was a reference to a sleeping section, specifically getting children who have difficulty sleeping to sleep. Through the night and everything. For a few weeks leading up to this books arrival, Babs had decided to wake up each morning at 4 am to start her day. She would be content in her crib as long as CG or myself was in her room laying on the floor, thinking of the sleep we were missing out on. I'd usually make her stay in her crib until 6 am before officially starting our day. It was painful. And I was at a complete loss as to what to do. And I was exhausted. Oh, so exhausted.
So I speedily skipped to the sleeping section and read each page greedily, and slightly maniacally. There must be an answer! Lolly has always been a phenomenal sleeper and as much as I'd like to take full credit, with the addition of Babs I realized that it was just not true. Poor Babs. She's ended up being just as much of a guinea pig baby as Lolly has been.
It was a pretty simple solution. The point is that spirited children take a bit longer to adapt to a change, in anything from activity to sleep to a new environment or person. DUH! Like I didn't already know that about my kids, but I had just never connected it to Babs sleep problems.
The book recommended a four-step routine to help them transition to sleep.
- Transition Activity
- Connect & Calm Time
- Cue For Sleep
- Switch To Sleep
The next night I was at my sketching class and so CG had to go it alone on the new routine. To help him out I made a list of the new routine and Lolly really got into that. Almost every night after that she asked about the list so I decided to make a bedtime routine chart with Lolly as one of our little projects. And here is this fabulous thing that has brought such peace and happiness into our home.
It works because, although Lolly doesn't need the longer routine to get to sleep, she loves doing each thing on the chart and telling us what's next. Lolly gets the chart, Babs gets to sleep, everyone is happy!