It seems like every day we repeat the same routine with our kids. There’s school, homework, after school activities, sports, band, dinner, bath time and then finally my personal bed time. During all of this time it’s very busy and chaotic, kind of like watching a swarm of bees. All of these activities usually go smoothly except bedtime.
Every night when it comes time for the children to rest their sleepy heads they all get showers or baths and we settle down for the night, but not my boys. My daughters go to sleep right away and I never hear a peep out of them . I dread this time, every night with my sons. Yes, they report to their beds but then comes laughter and all sorts of issues. They beat on the walls, turn on lights, throw pillows, make disgusting noises towards each other. I have to admit I find myself laughing occasionally because they are so silly but, I can also get very frustrated with them. It’s difficult because at night when my kids go to sleep is when I am catching up on studying, working, doing laundry and just preparing for the next day.
I have approached this problem so many different ways. I’ve brought my youngest son out in the kitchen with me and let the oldest fall asleep, but then he likes hanging out with mom so much he doesn’t want to go to bed. I have let them just do their thing and they eventually fall asleep and during this time I put my head phones in and sit at my laptop and work. I have told their father about the ongoing issue and he’s talked to them several times, but it accomplishes nothing. I have talked to them at different times and explained to them that this is a crucial time for mommy to accomplish many things and I need their cooperation. They seem to care for a little bit then they forget and carry on with their ornery ways. This has been going on for a couple years.
One night I finally found the solution… As parents I’m sure everyone has always heard about “white noise” when trying to put babies to sleep. I have made it a point not to run my dishwasher until I walk out of their bedrooms. I run the dishwasher on longest cycle, it’s always full, I would never run it when it was empty and waste water and energy. Then I change the temperature one degree on our thermostat because at night our house calms down and it’s always either too hot or cold. When I do those two things it’s like magic! The boys finally fall asleep. It’s a little strange that white noise still works on them but I know many adults who have to fall asleep to a fan running, so why not use that on them?