Monday, November 21, 2011

Perfect Poseidon

For the past few evenings, whenever I walk past Poseidon's bedroom door, I can hear him softly talking to himself. Just a few minutes ago when I was changing, I heard him again and noticed it had already been more than 30 minutes since I put him down for bedtime. It is one of these evenings when I kiss the ground of the people who introduced sleep training.

When we were in the States back in July on holidays, all 3 kids had their biological clocks messed up. For the first 2 weeks of our one month holiday, Poseidon wouldn't go to bed before 9pm and couldn't get up before 8am. Since I was totally jet lagged as well, I couldn't drag myself out of bed early enough in the mornings to set the kids' internal clocks right. So in the end, I didn't have any alone time until 10pm. By the time I could sit down for my nightly cup of herbal tea, I was too tired to enjoy it in front of the tv. It was because of this that I almost cried of happiness after we came back to HK and all the kids were in bed again before 8pm.

I am an advocate of sleep training not just because my kids learned how to sleep by themselves at an early age, but mainly for my sanity. I try to imagine Hubby and my life if our kids were up with us until we were ready to bed and I shudder. If your kids are up with you, when do you get alone time with just you and your spouse? Every evening, I count the minutes when its time to get the kids ready for bed. It gives me a goal and something to look forward to the end of every day. Don't get me wrong, its not that I don't like spending time with my kids, but at the end of the day, you just need to relax and switch off. You don't want to be keeping an eye on your child, playing with them, doing stuff for them non stop right up until its time for everyone to go to bed.

Many evenings, when Hubby isn't on a business trip, we savor the peace and quiet. We get to watch a non PG movie on TV or get to discuss things without the kids asking us non stop questions. I get to do things I want to do. I am not using my precious minutes of even hour, rocking or patting my baby to sleep or sitting by the child's bedside, waiting for them to fall asleep. I simply count off the minutes to let them know bedtime is approaching, tuck them in, say good night and leave the room. I admit there are nights when the kids are rowdy and they need to be told off a few times, but there is never more drama than that.

In Hong Kong, many of the locals have their kids up with them till midnight! We often see kids walking around outside our building and we wonder how they get enough sleep for school the next day. And I also wonder how the helpers get enough sleep since they are up with them! I think that is one aspect of HK I will never get used to. I remember dying of sleepiness back in school in the Philippines because we didn't have a set bedtime either.

I am proud of the fact that although it gets chaotic towards it, bedtime is a time of day that we can relay on. No matter how good or bad the day was, I know that by 8pm, all my kids are in bed. They may still be awake, but they know they need to be IN bed. Boy Wonder and Nachos are allowed to chat with each other until they fall asleep, but they know to stay in their beds. And my goodness, even Poseidon who is now 16 months, know that resistance is futile and happily talks to himself in his crib until he falls asleep. This makes me love them even more, even though I know it was through our hard work that got them like this. I love you Ferber.

1 comment:

christao408 said...

I'm impressed. That's all I can say.