Sleep Begets Sleep.
This is the single most important thing that I have learned since becoming a mom, and it has been the guiding principle that has dictated much of the way I parent.
And yet, it still routinely SHOCKS me how true it is.
I read “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child” by Marc Weissbluth when B was about 6 months old, in a fit of desperation. We figured out how to make it work for us, and a new child was practically reborn. When W came into the world, we implemented the principles from scratch. Same with R. I have, for the most part, 3 amazing sleepers. I am grateful for this and determined to do just about anything to keep it that way.
Yesterday, R was coming off a bad night’s sleep. He took three very short naps and was fussy all day. He is getting over an illness. I thought about putting him to bed at 5:30…the occasional, temporary “reset” bedtime recommended in the book for thoroughly exhausted children. Then I second-guessed myself. “Nah. That’s wayyy too early. He’ll be up at the crack of dawn.” And I kept him up until his usual bedtime. After all, he snuck in a third short nap, which is unusual these days.
What do you think happened?
He had a hard time falling asleep and staying asleep. He was up for hours, crying unless we walked with him, looking at everything in the world but the back of his eyelids. Don finally resorted to Spotify and Neil Diamond after my back couldn’t take any more pacing, and the kid finally went to sleep around 11.
Up again at 1, up again at 5:30.
Even though I KNOW it, even after 3 kids, I sometimes still can’t quite believe it.
Sleep begets sleep.