Waving a teary goodbye to morning naps
So you’ve managed to go to the loo without an audience, made a lovely cup of tea and logged into Facebook in the hope of enjoying a good hour or so of baby-free time. Yes, you could be putting on a load of washing or scraping Weetbix off the table, but this is your time.
Only it isn’t anymore.
It starts with a whimper and gradually increases to a wail. Someone’s decided that they no longer need a morning sleep and hanging out with mum is so much more fun.
So what can you do?
Resistance is usually futile. Instead of fighting the change, take a deep resigned breath and help your toddler transition to one nap a day – because the last thing you need is to end up with no naps at all…
Here are some tips on how to smooth the transition:
1. Don’t worry what your friend’s kids are doing. Every child is different and some kids have two sleeps until they start school and some never have any. It has no bearing on your ability as a mother!
2. Start your toddler’s afternoon nap a little earlier. Make sure they’ve had their lunch recently, because they’re likely to sleep longer and better on a full tummy.
3. Breathe and be patient. It can take a while to get into a new schedule with naps and bedtimes, especially if your toddler’s head drops into their mash at 5pm. It can also be frustrating when your child is more tired and grizzlier than usual, but remember, like most things this is just another phase.
4. Have quiet time instead of a nap in the morning. Spend the time your toddler would usually be sleeping doing a calm activity like reading together. That way at least you’ll get a little bit of quality time and may even be able to finish a cup of tea. It’s a good habit to get into, especially once they move to no naps at all (but lets not think of this now!).
5. Try and keep bedtimes and naptimes consistent. Keep doing what you usually do to get them off to sleep even if it takes a bit longer. It’s easy to get out of sync if your toddler’s morning routine is changing, but the trick is to keep bedtimes and new naptimes consistent. Otherwise you could end up with a night owl and the only quiet time you get is spent passed out on the sofa.
How often does your toddler nap? Any tips? Please share in the comments section below.
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