Sometimes she reads books the way Daddy watches TV
posted by: JoAnn
I think we’ve reached the stage where we could totally go without naps. And, by “we,” I mean my three-year old, Claire. And, by “totally go without,” I mean she still needs them but I’m not fighting it anymore. And, by “not fighting it anymore,” I mean I’ve resorted to trickery.
Actually, truth be told, I’ve been doing this for a while now. Trickery, that is. As any parent of a preschooler will tell you, there’s a fine line between trickery and clever parenting. And, I’m okay with both descriptions if the results are favorable to both parties.
Claire was always a good sleeper as a baby, so I really can’t complain. Overall, she was a great napper as a toddler, so I realize we’re lucky. It’s just been up until recently that the nap-times have really started to fade. Of course, my tactics change when they become obsolete, morphing into the next trick up my sleeve.
Still, life for everyone is much more pleasant when the preschooler takes her nap, so I still try to push her, ever so gently, in that direction, whenever I can.
“Oh, no!” I’ll tell her. “You don’t have to take a nap. Why don’t you just snuggle under your blankets and read books? Which books do you want to read?”
I read books to her throughout the day, but she also likes to “read” them to herself or her baby or stuffed animals.
She requests her favorite books, and I get her all situated in her bed. Fluffed pillow? Check. Soft blankets? Check. Books to read? Check. Babydoll Daisy, Puppy and any other StoryTime participants? Check. Keeping my giddiness in check over a possible nap-time? Check.
I try not to smile too widely as I tiptoe for the door. I try not to sound too excited as I wish her a happy book reading time. A nap? No, there are no naps here. I’m careful not to mention anything about naps from this point on. Naps are for little kids who need to sleep, and not for little kids who want to read books in bed.
“Okay, Claire,” I say quietly. “Have fun reading to Daisy and Puppy!”
As I get things straightened up in my office, I can hear her reading her Busy Book to the creatures in her bed. It’s one of her favorites. A few moments pass, and by the time I get settled down to start on my own To Do List, I realize that her room is quiet. So, I sneak down the hallway and peek in.
A quiet calmness has descended. My “Just read books in your bed; you don’t have to sleep” tactic has taken another napless preschooler off guard. Luckily, I know the secret. Sometimes she reads books the way Daddy watches TV. And, how is that? Let’s just say there are closed eyelids involved.