I hope you like your house. Because, you’re never leaving it again.
I think Milo was around 4 months old when we started introducing him to his crib for naps. It was at this time that I started to HATE naps. Like seriously child, do you really need to sleep THIS much in a day!? And why is it broken down into 3 naps a day? Can’t you consolidate those naps to the morning so we can go live a life in the afternoon? Nope. It’s the baby’s world and we’re just living in it.
Naps and I have a weird love/hate relationship. I quite enjoy the “baby break”. I don’t have to be a clown or rush to go pee for a portion of the day so, that’s nice. I can eat something other than Milo’s scraps. Sometimes I just lay in bed because I know I won’t be able to when he’s awake. It’s weird. Before we had Milo I would never just lay down in the middle of the day. But, once you know that you CAN’T lay down, even if you wanted to, then you want to lay down. Is there some kind of psychological theory behind this?
So please take advantage of the “newborn-sleep-anywhere” days while you can because once your baby has to have multiple scheduled naps in their crib, your life will revolve around their schedule. What I’m trying to say is, I hope you like your house. Because, you’re never leaving it again. Below are four reasons why NAPS ARE THE WORST!
1. Nothing actually gets done when baby naps.
When Milo was having multiple naps a day, I remember counting down the hours and minutes until your his next nap because I would be thinking of all the things I would get done while he was asleep. I’m going to change the bedding, organize my closet, wipe down all his toys with Lysol, brush the dogs, give myself a pedicure, find all the lids to the Tupperware, and if there’s time left over I’ll exfoliate. And then, when he did sleep, I’d sit on the couch with my phone and look at all the photos and videos I had taken of him so far that day. I’d also do necessary things like wash his bottles, fold his laundry, and shop online for cute baby stuff we didn’t need. Then, when I’d see him stirring on the monitor and I knew he was about to wake up, I’d crush a muffin or something and sprint to the shower and wash important body bits with whatever soap was closest. If he fell back asleep, maybe I’d go crazy and wash my hair. So, if I’m being honest. Nothing ACTUALLY gets done during his naps. Am I the only one?
2. Leaving the house between naps is a struggle.
You could be the most organized person in the world. But, when your babe wakes up from a nap and you have 2-3 hours until the next nap, the struggle is real if you want to get out and do something in that time frame. The things you have to do in those 2-3 hours include (but are not limited to): change diaper – get babe dressed – bottle feed or breastfeed (if they’re onto solids then you’re shit out of luck – just stay home) – get babes outerwear on – get your outerwear on – put babe in carseat – drive to wherever you’re going – spend five minutes in that location – drive back home – get babe out of carseat – change diaper – bottle or breastfeed – begin nap time routine. WELL THAT WAS FUN!! AND, TOTALLY WORTH THE FIVE MINUTES YOU GOT TO SPEND AT BED BATH AND BEYOND!
3. Sometimes you will spend the entire duration of a nap trying to get your baby to nap.
These days SUCK! I remember my husband would get home from work and I was mentally exhausted and felt like I had spent my entire day just trying to get Milo to sleep. It’s like he would go through phases where he was like “f*ck napping!” After a while I decided to not even try to fight it because it would ruin my whole day and I hated how stressed it made me feel. So, I would lay with him in our bed until he fell asleep. He would crawl all over me for about 45 minutes and I wouldn’t move. I just laid there. When he passed out I would put king size pillows on either side of him and ninja myself out of the room with the monitor. Alternatively, for some morning naps, I would take him swimming at the public pool (this exhausted him) and he’d be asleep before we left the parking lot to go home. So, I’d go through the drive-thru at a local coffee shop, grab a latte, and take a nice hour long drive. I knew this wasn’t recommended by professional sleep people. I couldn’t have cared less. This is how we got through hard days. It worked. And, we were both happy.
4. You need a PhD in scheduling to be able to plan anything.
This is true even when your babe is having 1 nap a day. No, not a morning nap. Not an afternoon nap. It’s RIGHT SMACK DAB in the middle of the freakin’ day. I’m not bitter about it at all. Typically, Milo will nap 11:30-1:30. It is hard to plan anything around this nap time. Mornings are a little hectic. He wakes up, change diaper, bottle, breakfast (meal time with a toddler is like a 45 minute ordeal), clean up, get dressed, get everything organized to leave the house. By the time this all happens and I make myself presentable to go into public, it’s 9:30am or so. If it’s a weekday, don’t even bother because rush hour. If it’s the weekend you only have a couple hours before you need to be back home to feed him lunch and start the nap time routine. If you want to go do something after the nap it’s the same sh*t but replace lunch with dinner, bath, and bedtime routine. I’d also like to point out that on weekends nothing opens till after 10:00am. Hello! WTF are people with babies supposed to do!? Sometimes we bring Milo to a local café for breakfast. It’s yummy and it’s something to do to get out of the house before 10:00am, I guess.
My advice to parents would be to enjoy nap time a much as possible. Do whatever your little heart desires!! And do not feel guilty about it! If you know you want to leave the house, try to plan and organize everything the day before. Pack the diaper bag, lay out clothes, and have a clear plan of attack. If your babe turns into he who shall not be named when you start to approach their crib sometimes it’s best to just do WHATEVER works on those days. It not worth it to be upset and stressed all day trying to get your babe to sleep. And finally, if you want to get out of the house JUST GO! I’m working on trying to be more flexible with naps and not worrying so much if our day is not 100% on Milo’s nap schedule.
Despite all the annoying sh*t that comes with a baby’s nap schedule, I still think naps are a gift from the heavens above. It’s like a little mental and physical break where you can recharge your batteries. You’re able to check-in with yourself. Think some thoughts. Plan out a vacation you want to take but never will. Look at other Mom’s Instagram accounts and wonder how the f*ck their houses and clothes are so clean.
As the end of the nap approaches, you start to look forward to your babe waking up. And then, when they do, you quickly start counting down until the next nap.