I prefer structure, crave consistency, and thrive on schedules. This is not new information, and I definitely don’t keep this a secret. So, is Jack and Nick’s daily routine for them, or for me? Maybe it’s a little of both; a win-win for both parties.
I like a full night’s worth of uninterrupted sleep. A wave of panic shoots through me when I hear a cry on the monitor in the middle of the night. How much time do you give them to fall back asleep on their own? Wait too long and you stand a chance of two babies crying at 2am. I’m basically playing our version of Russian roulette; gamble the wrong way, and your next day may be in shambles.
I like mornings that start after 7:30am (that’s probably the former teacher in me; I still tend to live by a school schedule). Most days, I purposely set an early alarm for two reasons. I like to scroll through my phone to ease into waking up (and to check out what everyone else who stays up past 9pm did). This drives Ryan bananas because he can’t wrap his mind around hitting snooze or not setting the alarm for the actual time you have to physically get out of bed. I told you, we’re very different.
I also like to fit in a quick workout, take a shower, make the bed (probably the most important task here), and drink my coffee before the boys wake up. Here’s a parenting hack: you never have to worry about your coffee getting cold if you drink iced coffee. Genius, right? This pocket of uninterrupted time in the morning sets the tone for my whole day. Am I putting too much pressure on the time between 5:30am and 7:30am? Probably, but I like it that way.
I like naps during the day. Let me clarify: I like when the boys take naps. They are not at the age where they can play independently for very long (and their attention span is barely longer than a few minutes), so their nap time is the only solid chunk of time during the hours of 7:30am to 8pm that I have to myself. A few months ago, Jack was on a nap strike (for 17 days!) and it was like dying a slow death. I felt like every day was groundhog day.
I like an early bedtime. This is an easy rhythm to fall into when your husband’s alarm is set for 3:15am. Even so, I like to use the time after the boys go to bed to return all of the toys and cars to their original spots (I know this is pointless because in 12 hours they’ll be scattered all over again, but whatever helps ya sleep at night, right?), straighten up the house, and maybe catch up on a Real Housewives episode or two. If Ryan isn’t working, we’ll watch an episode of whatever mutually agreed upon show that’s currently in the lineup (some nights we get crazy and watch a FEW episodes, really living on the edge here, people). Since the boys go to bed around 8pm, I can accomplish all of these tasks and still be in bed by 9pm. #winning
So, maybe I’m selfish. Secret’s out: the general structure of the day and sleep schedule are really for me. Maybe me being selfish makes me a better mom (well, I’d like to think so, at least most days). And maybe that’s ok.
And guess what? The boys are better for it too. So like I said, a win for all involved.
Here’s the funny thing: when I wrote this post, Jack was waking up more than an hour and a half earlier than normal, waking up Nick in the process, and refusing to take a solid nap (despite being outside and in the pool all morning, so I know these kids were exhausted with a capital E).
So, our days started early and felt LONG. Oh, and since we’re already in the terrible twos, there were SO MANY MELTDOWNS (myself included). To borrow a Friends reference here, doesn’t that sound “just kick-you-in-the-crotch-spit-on-your-neck-fantastic?”
I mean, I know this isn’t Burger King. I can’t have it my way…at least not all the time. But you better believe I try my hardest when it comes to sleep. Let’s face it, our company is much more enjoyable. And my sanity depends on it.