Today I post, asking begging for advice. I have a sweet, wonderful, funny and charming two year old girl, who is very strong willed and inquisitive. Right now, I am sitting on one end of the couch, while she is tucked in at the other end of the couch, for her daily nap. Except she isn’t sleeping.
I can hear you now, put her in bed, not on the couch. Well, that is where she normally naps, but the past few weeks, she has decided not to nap but to removed all items of clothing from the dressers, removed sheets from the bed, take mattresses off the bed and lock herself in the closet or, she is walking through the house looking to play with someone/thing.Â I check on her every three to five minutes, and sometimes, this damage was done in the time it took for me to take a bathroom break. Yesterday, I sat with her for a bit and she fell asleep pretty quickly, but I was unable to monitor the two older kids. Today, Benedict was still awake, so I made the bed for her on the couch.
I have also put her in bed with a swat on the well padded behind, which lead to tears of great sorrow…which only last the time it takes me to walk down the hallway, then she is back to “having fun”.
I am honestly not able to get much work done around the house in the afternoon because of this and am somewhat frustrated by it. I also will admit, it is nice to have 10 minutes to sit and relax in the afternoon, which with her lack of a nap, doesn’t happen. If I let her stay up, we have major melt downs around the time I start making dinner.
In addition to the naptime situation, there is the inquisitive side of her nature, the one the finds her in the bathroom, climbing on things (like from the toilet to the sink, to open the medicine cabinet and play), all done in the time it takes for me to start a load of laundry. I honestly have to keep my eyes on her every.second.of.the day and it is getting old.
She is child #3 and the other two were not so trying. I have tried giving her activities, letting her watch a special movie or putting on soothing music to keep her occupied, but she is drawn to dangerous or bad things.
So, veterans mamas, did you have a two year old like this? What did you do?
Boo. I was hoping you’d get lots of helpful comments, but I really can’t leave any because I’m certainly not a veteran mama. Our oldest is certainly our most challenging so far. He is nearly perfectly well-behaved for Peter, so we’re using a behavior chart during the day now, for Daddy to look at when he comes home. It’s helped a bit. But yours is probably still too young for that! I can pray for you though!!!
I can’t offer any advice, either. My kid have NEVER been good nappers. When Chiara and Zeke were younger, I fought to get them to nap. I tried a lot of the things you mentioned. Somedays it worked, others it didn’t. I ended up wasting more time trying to get them to sleep then getting anything done. I gave up once Isabel was born. Vincent naps once, but it’s usuallyin the car on the way to pick Chiara up from school. The only benefit to no naps is that they go to bed way early. I sympathize with you!
Caecilia doesn’t want to go to bed at night either, so bedtime is the repeat of nap time. I told Joshua that one day, I want to let her have the run of the day, she can do what she wants (within reason, of course) and see what happens. Ha ha. He told me to put a leash on her, sorta kidding of course.
Today I laid down with her for a few minutes and talked with her, then she fell asleep.
I think I may do a behavior chart as she totally gets the “prize” concept. She is pretty much potty trained and knows she gets a prize if she goes by herself. (Her prize of choice: prunes.)
We went through something somewhat similar with M lately. She just refused to go to sleep. I would go in and threaten at least four times per nap/night. It was starting to become really overwhelming. Now, M is still in her crib, so she has some physical constraints that make it a bit easier to deal with. But it wasn’t until Matthew started telling her that she didn’t have to go to sleep, she just needed to rest and not talk that she stopped being so much of a problem about sleep. Of course, as I type this, she is talking in her room instead of sleeping.