I have been dwelling on Proverbs “Train Up a Child” in the past couple months.
At some point, I’ll share a short devotional I prepared for some sweet expectant mommies at church on that verse and Deuteronomy 6.
Today though, I want to remind myself of something I don’t want to forget when the next baby comes along. Maybe it could help someone else out there too.
As it is for most things, children need to be trained.
I am as “hippie wanna be” as you can get. Well that’s not true, I could be much more haha but one thing that I do not adhere to when it comes to my personal preference for parenting is not getting good and private sleep. It wouldn’t be healthy for me, for my husband, or for our marriage. Personally, I don’t think it would be healthy for Haddon either.
Now, don’t get me wrong…
- Do I sleep well every night? No
- Does Haddon sleep through the night every night? No
- Does my husband sometimes wake me up snoring more than my son? Yes
However, overall Haddon is a good sleeper unless there are factors like travel, teething, and so on.
I don’t attribute this to his personality, that he has a comfortable bed, etc.
I attribute it to prayer and training (and that he gets his pacifier lol).
He had to be trained to sleep and to sleep on his own.
Now, I know some may not agree with “crying it out” and truthfully I hate that terminology for sleep training.
Yes, I used to let Haddon cry for a little bit, but you know what – it never took more than two or three nights before he would “get it”. So we have trained Haddon to sleep multiple times, after teething, after growth spurts, after sickness, etc.
In my opinion though, if there are no contributing factors – babies need sleep and so do parents!
I know hearing babies cry can be the worst, but it doesn’t happen long and sleep is so essential for health.
Like most goals, think of the end result. Think about when adults have to learn something… it isn’t always easy, it’s sometimes painful, etc but it is always worth it.
Training is hard work. I don’t even want to think about the day when we work with Haddon to train him to sleep without his doe doe, but it will happen someday (not soon) because he isn’t going to be three with a stuffed animal hanging from his mouth.
Some of my “must haves” for getting my best sleep:
– freshly made sheets
– my fan on
– water beside my bed
– super comfy loose clothes
– wash my face, brush my teeth, put on acne treatment gel, astringent, and moisturizer
– go to the bathroom before I drift off (even if I went when I did my face and teeth regimen)
– read (whether its blogs, books, or whatever – just to wind my mind down)
I liked this blog I read this morning on family bedtimes and mornings. It’s not so much about sleep training but about the culture you create around bedtime and mornings.
My favorite line was: “I think age has so little to do with when our kids should be in bed and more to do with what you want your home to look and feel like.”
In our house, I think every night should begin with cuddling and praying and every morning should begin with cuddling and saying: “happy day”! Apparently that is how I used to wake my mom up when I was little and I am trying to teach Haddon to do the same.
Don’t even ask what I do when Micah tries to wake me up… I really like sleep!
What do you like in place in order to sleep? What are your family’s nighttime rituals? Do you sleep train? Did sleep training work for one kid and not the next?