It probably won’t shock you to know that sleep falls very high on our household list of priorities. For some people, this sounds like I might live a life that requires me to stay home and be a drill sergeant for sleep times. But healthy sleep and freedom are not mutually exclusive terms. For some, the perception that their freedom will be lost is a very big factor in why they are not sleep training.
Click the link for my Top 5 Tips for Having a Life and Getting Your Kids to Sleep.
We have a very busy household. Between daycare, pre-school, two businesses, a full-time job, two kids under 4, teenage foster kids, and errands, we’re not home a lot and when we are, it’s busy! On top of that, I cart my munchkins halfway across the globe around 1-2 times per year so that they can grow up knowing their cousins, aunties and uncles in the UK. I have some huge motivation to have happy well rested kids that can be flexible with their sleep.
That being said, is it perfect and happy 100% of the time? Not a chance. Do we have bad nap days, early wakes and tantrums? Abso-freakin-lutely!! So I prioritize restorative sleep where I can, so that when I need them to be flexible, their little bodies do not go into panic mode causing tantrums, bedtime struggles, and restless nights.
What does this mean exactly?
It means that I make sure my babies go to bed on time, whenever possible. For my kids, this means 7:30 pm and honouring their bedtime routines. We do not rush this time and it really is a happy time of day for us all. It means that my son gets to nap in his crib as often as possible, which is typically 5 days a week (he only naps once a day). Back when he was sleeping for two naps per day, due to our schedules with pickups and drop offs, one nap per day was in the car, so I made sure his other nap was in the crib.
So, when I want to stay late at a friend’s house, I can! My kids stay up late and hang with their friends and we just know that the next day, they might be a little grumpy (not always but sometimes). It also means that I have learned to find creative ways to honour my children’s sleep. I will bring a pack-and-play to a friends’ house and nap them there so that I can visit. I have napped them earlier in the day than usual to accommodate an afternoon plan and rolled with a 6/6:30 pm bedtime for the same reason. YES this is possible and it doesn’t mean your child will wake the next day at 5 am!
Sleep training gives families WAY MORE freedom. Not less!
Being a parent can be exhausting and it’s a HUGE change from the life you had before. Taking freedoms away is not in the sleep plan; I can promise you that. However, teaching you to get creative with healthy sleep habits is in the sleep plan. Healthy sleep habits mean that your child is still their happy selves and are not a raging hot mess on the days you need more flexibility. And no one misses out on great memories.
This is exactly why the consultation is a VITAL part of the sleep learning journey. In order to give you the outcomes and freedoms you deserve, I have to know your family very well. This way we can spend time coaching you for what comes beyond the learning stages. No one likes the thought of being housebound, especially after the long freaking winters we have been enduring. Let me help debunk the freedom myth and give you practical solutions that keep your household happy in all areas of life, starting with sleep!