What Makes Mama Happy? The Answer Will Put You to Sleep
Do me a favor really quick: I want you to count on your hand (because I know that you won't need more than five fingers) the number of times in the past 30 days that you've had all of your kids in bed before 8:30 p.m.
One time? Three times?
If you have to pull your other hand out of your pocket to start counting fingers six through ten, then I applaud you. But if you're straining just to remember one time, relax. Bedtime is seen by some as the most dangerous game ever played, especially since bedtime is just like taxes, death, and one of the Kardashian/Jenner family being featured on the news (i.e., unavoidable and painful).
Believe me, I understand that bedtime can be a struggle for parents and for little people. In an article with Yahoo Parenting, Conner Herman, the co-founder of an infant and toddler sleep consultancy called Dream Team Baby, even went as far as saying that the “last moments of the day [meaning bedtime] are such intense family time.”
And they are intense. Delirious tantrums rage, impatient parents struggle to survive, and next door neighbors brace for the apocalypse.
But if you try really, really hard and get your kids in bed before that magic time of 8:30 p.m., you're going to have better mental health than that of moms who struggle to get their kids in bed early. Not only will you have the peace of mind that your kids will be getting the rest that they need in order for their little bodies to continue to grow and become healthier and stronger, but you'll also be getting some time to yourself, which, in turn, gets you to sleep earlier. Herman said, “There is no substitute for sleep, and if you're not getting enough of it then you're not able to have a clear mind during the day.”
On top of that, you'll be more likely to get some time to yourself before you start counting sheep. Once the kids are in bed, “you can relax your mind and your body and focus on any last things you need to get done or just talk to your partner or read or watch a show on TV,” Herman added. “Everyone needs that shutting-down time.”
Do you think this is something that's attainable? How chaotic or seamless are your bedtime routines?