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Monday, May 13, 2013

Toddler Never-naps

On the TV show Arrested Development there a character who's a "Never-nude" -- someone who can't get naked ever. He even showers in cut-offs. (Which is apparently a real thing.) Toddler Flails-a-lot is his mirror image: an always-ready-to-be-nude who never-ever-ever wants to nap.

Her current trick to avoid sleep is to create short term goals she can focus on during nap-time. Friday, for instance, she spent her time attempting to unbutton then button her shirt. Since she was at daycare, she knew that as long as she chillaxed on her blanket they'd leave her be. These are tiny buttons and she's terrible at it, so this occupied her happily and no sleep was had. When I asked, in my futile way, if she had slept, the teacher gave me The Look. Equal parts disbelief that I had any hope whatsoever of a positive answer and the knee-jerk "of course not!" reaction. I try to keep the hope out of my voice. I really do.

Now Toddler Flails-a-lot is home with a runny nose (she made it 2 weeks healthy, oh well). At nap time she went to bed tired and fairly cheerfully, chattered at the bears for a bit then grew quiet. I was ecstatic because she'd successfully avoided naps times all weekend. But then when I heard her "wake up" I found that she had spent her nap-time methodically destroying one of her crib books. Every single page was removed, torn into tiny pieces and tossed over the side of her crib into a heaping pile. She was disgustingly content with her work.
nap time
I just stared and asked (stupidly since she's 2), "Why? Why would you do this?" I was going to make her clean it up as :"punishment" except she fully intended to do that anyway. She actually told me to go get the recycling bin so she could pick up all the debris and throw it away. I'm sure I failed some parenting rules in my lackluster, "We don't tear books..." recrimination, but honestly, I just couldn't muster the energy. It was a crappy Elmo shape book. Her other crib book, the wonderful Caps for Sale she tossed over the side completely intact. Her discernment in object destruction and her industriousness in the clean up just took all the wind out of my sails. She even put the recycling bin away. 

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4 comments:

  1. Ah the agony that is the unfulfilled nap.Can't say I look forward to that again. Came in once and my child was jumping up and down yelling,"You crazy" which offended because of family history. He was probably three. And I remember the Arthur pop up book he systematically dissected. I too was horrified. The recycling part is too cute.

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    1. I've gotten better at accepting non-naps as an inevitable part of life. Used to make me super edgy so that even if she was down I wasn't getting rest or anything done because I was too stressed out. Now, I just keep it moving. She's (generally) happy and that makes it so much easier. I find myself hideously offended by how she indignantly tells me to "Stop it!" in a sing-song cadence. No, YOU STOP IT. :)

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  2. two glorious two...try to enjoy it because soon it will be 3

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    1. Yeah, I've heard the stories. Sounds awful.

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