We all expect, when we have that newborn baby in our arms, the sleepless nights. The nights of feeding, rocking and waking up to crying in the middle of the night becomes routine. My experience with newborn babies is no different from everybody else’s. That lack of sleep does shit to your mind you can’t quite imagine if you don’t have kids. However as your babies grow into children, the sleepless nights become a thing of the past right? You set a lovely bedtime routine, the kids are in bed and you and the hubby can have some time to yourselves cuddle up on the sofa watching Great British Bake off. There are times when this is reality.
My husband and I worked hard at a bedtime routine. When we only had our eldest daughter, we would feed her, bath her and read her a bedtime story. By the time she was one she would go to bed at 6 o’clock and sleep all the way through until 8:00 a.m. Even though she didn’t nap during the day, she was a dream throughout the night. My son came along and the routine became a bit longer with an extra person to feed and wash however, we still managed to get both children into bed by 6:30 ish.
At around the age of 7 and 4 the routine was still very similar to when they were babies except their bedtime had moved to 7 o’clock on a school night and 9 o’clock at the weekends. This worked well for us until it didn’t. There became a point, I’m not sure when, but the kids decided sleep just wasn’t for them. The routine we would try to stick to with our four year old. Our seven year old would read a book before lights out. Howeve there would be doors opening, things bouncing on the floor, creaks on the stairs. The kids obviously were no longer interested in sleep.
Our evenings become a series of up and down the stairs waiting for the next excuse of why they were out of bed, why they were sat on the stairs, why they weren’t sleeping.
We all know that younger children can come out with some random and funny things from time to time and some of the excuses have been interesting to say the least. Especially my four year old.
36 of the regular excuses we face most nights in our house:
- I need to pee. Even though I asked you three times before you went to bed only two minutes ago. You said you had been!
- I’m thirsty. But you had a drink just before we came upstairs, you can’t be thirsty. But I’m thirsty.
- I had a bad dream. You haven’t even closed your eyes yet, how could you have a bad dream already? But it was a bad dream *tears begin to fall*
- I want a hug and a kiss. You had a hug and a kiss when I put you to bed, and another when I went to the toilet, and another before I went downstairs, and another when I put the baby to bed. No I need another one.
- I have something dery (very) important to tell you. You always have something very important to tell me, can it wait until morning. No it’s dery important.
- I just want to have a chat with you for two minutes. We have had all afternoon to chat, right now it is bedtime we will chat in the morning.
- I haven’t done my homework. Your homework isn’t due until Thursday today is Sunday, we will do it during the week.
- I need to finish my colouring. You mean the colouring that has just sat there since this morning untouched all day.
- I need Ted. Where is he? I don’t know! Where did you have him last? Downstairs. Daddy brings teddy upstairs.
- I can’t sleep without my brand new car, and that one, and that one (and the entire box).
- There are too many cars in my bed. Why did you put them all in the bed in the first place? I didn’t they hid under my pillow.
- I haven’t finished telling (all 22) my teddy’s a story. Finish it tomorrow, the teddies are tired and your keeping them awake.
- I need a poo. You have had four already today, your such a poo machine.
- I need to wash my face. You washed your face when you went to the bathroom to brush your teeth. I need to wash it again.
- I forgot to tell you something. What is it? I can’t remember. Hang on one minute I’m thinking.
- I want the light on, I can’t see my room. It’s night time, your not supposed to be able to see.
- I want the light off. On/off make up your mind.
- I have a runny nose. Grab a tissue and go to sleep!
- I want to read a book. It’s getting late read tomorrow.
- But it’s not dark outside so it’s not bedtime. It’s the summer, the sun goes to bed late in summer but that doesn’t mean you can.
- I didn’t give daddy a hug. Yes you did.
- My door isn’t closed properly. That’s because you opened it.
- I’m not tired. Is that why you are yawning every ten seconds?
- The duvet cover is the wrong way round.
- The duvet isn’t tucked in right.
- How come you don’t have to go to sleep? Because I’m a grown up and don’t need so much sleep to grow like you. Daddy must have slept a lot when he was 4 like me.
- I forgot to give you my letter from school. Give it to me in the morning.
- I tried, I just can’t. Yes you can, close your eyes. Nope doesn’t work.
- My top is itchy. Put a new one on and go to sleep.
- But it’s family night. Yes and you stayed up playing board games until 9o’clock, it’s late.
- But it’s not a school night. And you have stayed up. But I want a midnight snack.
- But I want to play outside. You have been outside all day, you can go out again tomorrow.
- But the cars hid in my bed. I’m sure they did.
- I forgot to give daddy a kiss. You’ve tried that one already buddy. No that was a hug.
- But my pajamas don’t match. They are pajamas, does it matter if they don’t match. Yes, I can’t sleep if they don’t match.
- But it’s the summer holidays. And it will still be the summer holidays tomorrow
This post was originally posted on happygomummy.co.uk