Have you spent the last few months painstakingly perfecting your child’s schedule? Have you finally coerced them into falling asleep at a decent hour and waking at a time that doesn’t require intravenous administration of caffeine to survive the day? I’m not sure how to break this to you. So, brace yourself. I have some bad news.
It’s almost that time again. If you’re a parent, you’re probably already dreading it. “It” being the loathed Daylight Savings Time. While the care-free single people of the world will have an extra hour to snooze between their solid white linens, we parents will be enduring the hell that is dealing with a child who has had their schedule seriously derailed.
Daylight Savings Time will end on November 6, when we will all move our clocks back one hour. This also means our children will no longer be tired at their designated bedtime, and will rise an hour earlier, almost certainly before the sun. It may also throw off their nap, meal times, and cause them to grow horns and speak in tongues. It’s going to be brutal.
While I can’t guarantee you will be escape the nightmare of this time change — I think it is a parenting rite of passage of sorts — I can offer a few tips for transitioning your child that have worked for me.
First, don’t let the time change sneak up on you. Try moving their schedule back a few minutes every day leading up to the end of Daylight Savings Time. Put your kids to bed 10 or 15 minutes earlier each night and adjust their wake up time as well. This will make the change feel less abrupt and more gradual.
Let the light in, especially in the mornings. Exposure to sunlight can help their body readjust to the new rhythm, making it easier for them to fall asleep a little earlier.
Add some extra exercise to the routine. This will ensure your kids are nice and tired by bedtime and after chasing after them all day, you will be too. Plus, if you keep them occupied there’s less time for a meltdown.
If all else fails, I recommend investing in noise cancelling headphones and buying your caffeinated beverage of choice in bulk. Remember, we’re all in this together.
How do you combat the assault on your child’s schedule?