Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Diabolical Plan To Overthrow The Early Morning Dictator

Steve and I have been planning a early morning coup for quite some time now. We just couldn't take any more of the 4:30 AM wake ups, which if you know me or have been reading this blog, have been going on with Jack for waaaay too long. Actually, Steve just couldn't take it anymore because he was the one getting up with him every morning so I wasn't totally spent by noon. But it was killing him, and killing me to see him fast asleep next to me by 8:30 PM every night. We both knew something had to be done. The trickiest part of the whole thing was overthrowing his regime without him realizing we were doing it. He may be three, but he wasn't born yesterday.
So, we hatched our schemes and made our plans. Here was the strategy: We would make a bed next to ours and when he came into our room we would make him lay back down and sleep until at least 6 AM. We figured if we could get him to sleep a little longer we could maybe, just maybe, break him of this hideous sleep schedule he has been on. So we took a deep breath, made the bed on the floor, and said a little prayer.
The next morning Jack came in, not at 4:30 AM, but at 4:00 AM. I told him that he had to lay down next to us and go back to sleep. You can imagine how well that went over. The dictator was not going down without a fight. He cried. And cried. And CRIED. I told Steve not to respond to him because it seems to fuel the fires of his tantrums, so I just kept saying to him, as calmly as I could "Lay down Jack, you need to go back to sleep." More crying. Then louder crying. Then, screaming, at the top of his lungs, "DADDY, WAKE UP!" within about twelve inches of Steve's ear. We were holding each other's hands beneath the covers, practically crying ourselves.
A very painful half hour later, Jack finally laid down. He must of been exhausted, because once his head hit the pillow he slept until about 6:30 AM. Now, that might sound early to some of you, but when you've become accustomed to waking up at 4:30 AM almost every day for months and months, it feels downright decadent. I couldn't believe it, the energy I had. But I was dreading the same scene (too early) the next morning.
The next morning, 4:30 AM, Jack comes in again. I was expecting more close range screaming and prolonged crying, but I just said "Jack, lay down and go to sleep," AND HE DID! WHAT? That's all it took? Why have we been putting up with this stuff for so long? Live and learn, that's all I can say. Now he is usually sleeping until about 6 AM. In his own bed. So we can give up naps and have a normal night's sleep. Let me tell you, the world looks much better at 6:30 AM vs. 4:30 AM. Just ask Steve.


Kate Bailey said...

Nice work, guys! Isn't it annoying how incredibly easy it ends up being sometimes?! I felt that way when I let Hannah cry in the middle of the night because I couldn't get up every three hours anymore, and I knew she didn't need to. It took two minutes of crying and she's only done it once in the two months since! Why did I put up with it for so long?! Ahhh. I'm so glad you guys found something that worked. I'm sure the world looks a ton better after 6am.