A slow farewell

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Categories Napping, Preschoolers, Sleep, ToddlersTags , , ,

Oh, my friends, it is truly a sad day in my house.  I have come to acknowledge a painful fact.

The nap is on its way out.


OK, it’s not gone yet.  And, to be more specific, it’s my son who seems to be getting ready to drop it.  Over the last few weeks, I’d say were at a 50-60% success rate on his nap.  If we do something especially exhausting in the morning, or weather conditions are favorable (I’m not kidding), we get a nap.  If we don’t do much, or if some number of planets are out of alignment, not so much.

It has become quite a balancing act.  You see, even on a good day, he will mess around in his room and sing to himself for a while before going to sleep.  The challenging part is how long to let him continue.  Do I go in after a while and remind him to go to sleep? Sometimes seems to work, sometimes not.  Plus, to make things even more interesting, I find he’s a lot worse-tempered if he ends up falling asleep too late (and I usually end up having to wake him up lest it get too close to dinner and bedtime).  While he’s happiest on the days that he gets a “normal” nap, he’s actually not all that bad when he skips it outright.

I’d love to blame this on our recent transition to separate bedrooms and toddler beds, because who doesn’t like a scapegoat? But the truth is that his naps were going downhill in this very manner for several weeks before we made the switch.  And, at least now he isn’t keeping his sister up.  I also have to count my blessings in that he does stay in his room without a fight, even if he spends much of the time singing at the top of his lungs.

Surprise Chicago Trip

Alas, all good things must come to an end.  I will continue to hold onto our sporadic nap, or quiet time, or break in your room, or whatever you want to call it, for as long as I can.  At a bare minimum, we need the break from each other until September, when they start preschool in the mornings.

Surprise Chicago Trip

I can only hope all that learning exhausts them.

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12 thoughts on “A slow farewell”

  1. I think one of our girls (17 1/2 months) is ready to transition to one nap a day, but the other still takes a relatively decent afternoon nap. I’m holding out as long as I can before going to one nap. I know some things will be easier, like having a longer block of time for activities, but it will definitely be an adjustment – primarily for me.

    Even when our girls are older, I intend to have “room time”. One of my girlfriends has a 4-year old, and she plays in her room every day for an hour or so while Mom gets some (relative) down time.
    MandyE recently posted Delighted Faces are Daddy’s TreatMy Profile

  2. Our 3.5 year old is no longer napping but he has quiet time in the afternoon in his bedroom. This gives me a few minutes by myself during the day. But, I think he also benefits from having some down time by himself. He’ll be at playschool in the afternoon in the fall, so we’ll have to find another time for him to rest.

  3. Oh no! I can’t imagine what we’d do if Jackson didn’t still nap, although I know it’s probably not going to last much longer! Most days he takes a 90min-2hr nap and on days that he doesn’t, 5pm-7pm is close to unbearable! Daniel may surprise, stick with the quiet time and I’ll bet he will start falling asleep during that time more regularly… especially if he doesn’t think he HAS to.
    tanya recently posted Ava + Emma + Cake = LOVE!!My Profile

  4. We are going through the exact same thing w/ our 3.5 YOs! My son plays/talks in his room more often now than he naps; my daughter usually still sleeps. And I’ve realized that I need to wake them both up by 3 p.m. if I don’t want bedtime to be a nightmare.

  5. Don’t despair Liz! F has be napping 30-40% for MONTHS and MONTH, but she was content to play quietly (or loudly) in her room. Now, for whatever reason, she is back to napping 5/7 days, and has been for about a month. Growth spurt, maybe?

    J is now going through the same rocky transiton…but we are holding onto “rest time” for as long as possible!
    Krissy recently posted Pony RideMy Profile

  6. My boys just turned 3. We put them down for “naps” from 12-2 religiously when they are home. They do NOT go right to sleep and goof around quite a while before settling (depending on the day). We wake them at 2PM regardless – to ensure a good bedtime.
    But they share a room and are still in cribs. If not for the cribs, this “nap time” aka “quiet time” would be “crazy time”, I’m quite sure of it. They wake at 630 AM and bedtime is 730 PM sharp. Our ped. says that 11 hours solid sleep each night is all they need at their age and naps may becoming a thing of the past, very soon. I dread the thought but we will power through it somehow.
    However, if we have outings etc, and go through the day without a nap, they will conk out in the car and 20 mins catnap is all they need to see them through til bedtime (which is 730 PM sharp).

  7. Naps went out the window when my daughters started preschool. If they napped, they were up until 9am or later and then it was a bear to get them up in the morning. So, I gave up naps, but they go to bed at 7pm, are asleep by 7:30pm (most nights) and sleep until 7am. I’m still willing to go back to naps if a) they’re tired and b) they’ll still go to bed at a reasonable hour.
    Quadmama recently posted SunscreenMy Profile

  8. My three year old twin boys gave up napping last summer (at just over 2 years old) after transitioning into beds. I was getting a 2-3 hour nap out of them so when that was gone I felt like I went through a mourning period! I tried doing the “quiet time” but that resulted in toys all over the room and drawers being emptied out. It was more work than it was worth. In the end, I just gave in. After all, my oldest was that same age when she stopped napping. After a month or two I decided to move their bedtime 30 minutes earlier. That helped me feel like I had atleast a little bit of time to myself. Now a year later we are all adjusted to our schedule and it is not nearly as bad as I feared. And when all else fails “Max and Ruby” will buy me atleast 30 mins of quiet!!!

  9. So funny – I just wrote about this on my blog. What do you do when one twin needs the nap and one is completely over it? And my girls are only 20 months old!!!
    The only thing I can say is that they sleep from 7 pm to 7:30 on most days, so I guess I can’t complain too much!

  10. What a sad, sad day when naps are over. My boys are 2.5 and they still nap at least five days a week. On the days they don’t nap (like today) they stay in their room and play for about an hour 1/2 before I let them wander out. The upside is bedtime gets bumped up by an hour on the days they don’t nap so at least I have that do look forward to after an exhausting afternoon with no nappers!
    Cristal recently posted For PatrickMy Profile

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