I babysat a lot as a teenager and as a young adult. As one of the youngest cousins, I had a lot of baby second cousins growing up. I worked as a nanny, and a child care educator at a daycare. One thing all these things taught me, kids usually nap until they are 3-4 years old. So when I had my son, I thought I would have years of that precious 1-2 hours break in the day where he slept and I either got stuff done, or napped myself, especially these days, growing babies makes you sleepy! But here I am, Mal is 2.5 years old and we are transitioning from nap time.
When summer started, Mal started going to bed later – 7 was his usual, then it moved to about 7:30-8. Later on movie nights or family nights. But always before 9 and he always fell asleep and stayed asleep all night. Then when summer ended he never really went back to early bedtime, but instead it was starting to get later and later. We have been home all day everyday with little activity because of my pregnancy so I thought that maybe had something to do with it. Then about 3-4 weeks ago, he wouldn’t be in bed until 10-11 and sometimes even midnight. He still wanted to nap so I started waking him up early in the morning and cutting his naps shorter and it would make no difference at night. So we transitioned from nap time. We moved into having more of a quiet time during the day instead. Cause mom needs it, and when baby comes it’ll just be easier.
Okay so first day of transitioning from nap time we did quiet time in his room. I set up a little reading area, a little people play area and his car area. He played in there for a good 30 minutes, but he came out a lot. But I got a solid 10 minutes to myself. I know that it may seem selfish to be basing his nap and quiet time on what I need too. But if mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy. Am I right? Doing what we need during the day is just as important as doing what they need. For me a little alone time is what I need, especially because right now he’s very clingy throughout the day. So I got a little break and it made all the difference. Because he fell asleep late the night before he was really tired come 4pm so he actually ended up falling sleep on the couch. I let him sleep for about 45 mins and then woke him up. He went to bed around 9 that day. I have this documented on Instagram in my stories highlight. Check it out!
His dad was home for this day so I sent the 2 of them downstairs for a movie. I got a hour of alone time (which I used to write this ;)). Mal watched for about 30 minutes before going to play. He had gotten up around 8:30 that morning and slept all night so he had a bit of a better sleep so he wasn’t so tired in the afternoon. Around 7 he had his bath and bedtime routine and then fell asleep easily around 7:45-8. Successful night for me!
I’ll probably do the movie again, and get some of my other work stuff done in the mean time. But I’ll update my Instagram stories highlights with how it goes!
We haven’t totally dropped the nap. I’m sure there will be some days that he will find somewhere to sleep. Or car naps – he loves those! So for now I’ll keep quiet time and nap time at the same time each day just as part of our routine.
If you’re transitioning right now too, I hope this helps if you didn’t know where to start. I think for us the best thing was to shorten naptimes before getting rid of them all together.
Now it’s your turn. When did you’re little one drop the nap? Did you do quiet time? How’d it go?
Comment below, I’d love to know!