I don’t know what I would do as a mother of young children without naps. Not for me, for my kiddos. I truly think that nap time is God’s gift to mothers.
We have had some sleeping issues lately at our house, with my son starting to climb out of his crib, and I was starting to wonder if I would have to give up on nap time. Fortunately though, my kids have gotten back into the nap time routine, and I have regained my sanity (at least partly, anyway).
I make sure to guard nap time every afternoon, and I work hard to get my kids to nap on a regular basis. The peacefulness I feel when I walk downstairs and my kids are asleep, and I know I have an hour or two of silence, is priceless to me.
It helps me to be a better mother because no matter how ornery, stubborn, or naughty my kids were acting in the morning, they usually wake up happy and with a much different attitude. If I can keep my patience through the morning, then I know once I get to nap time, I can make it through the rest of the day.
Not to mention that I usually get in my own little cat nap while I’m putting my kids down. I usually fall asleep in the rocking chair, for about 10-15 minutes while either rocking my son, or “watching” over while my kids fall asleep in their own beds. And that short rest, is just what I need to make it through the rest of the day.
That’s why I think God made young kids to need to sleep a lot, because he knew that we as mothers would need a break. The days when my kids don’t take naps are loooong, and I’m a mama bear by the end of the day, and not in a good way. So, I need that nap time!
But, I also know that some mamas have a really hard time getting their kids to nap on a regular basis, or on a regular schedule. My heart really goes out to those moms because I know they are not getting a much needed, and deserved, break.
I’m not a nap expert by any means, but I think if I had to give any advice to a mama of a toddler who was struggling with nap time, I would say:
- Keep a schedule – put your child down for nap at pretty much the same time every day,
- Make it a priority – don’t skip nap unless you absolutely have to.
- Stick with it – it might take several weeks, but working with your child to help them sleep is important for them and for you.
How do you view nap time at your house? Do you stick to a pretty strict schedule with naps, or do your tots nap one day and not the next? What do you do during nap time – take a nap yourself, get chores done, or spend time to yourself?
Photo source: peasap/flickr