I had read all the books; I thought I was ready. My son was only two months old.
I’ll get this baby scheduled if it’s the last—and only—thing I do today.
Pen and paper in hand, I marked all the feeding and nap times my infant son had gone through that day, and tried to make sense of it. I compared the blocks of time to those outlined in the Schedule-Your-Baby books before me, trying to decipher a pattern, and ultimately come up with a plan of attack that would have him going down to nap at the same precise time each day.
I will give you one guess as to how this all worked out. It’s a four-letter word that starts with “CR” and ends with “AP.”
CRAP. As it turns out, I am total crap at scheduling my kids. (I think it’s important to know one’s strengths and weaknesses, and apparently anything involving any sort of order or organization in my life falls under the category of Capital W “WEAKNESS.” Eh. Win some, lose some.)
This lack of scheduling ability persisted with all my kids. In the baby stage, I just couldn’t (and can’t) seem to noodle a way into their daily patterns to institute any real changes. The good news is, as they got older, they seem to thankfully settle into relatively predictable patterns of their own that I just grew to respect and work around.
Don’t get me wrong: My kids do certain things at certain times every day. Meals, bath time and bedtime all happen at relatively the same hour daily. It’s just that I don’t stress when they don’t, and more importantly, I’ve stopped comparing myself to mothers who are able to seemingly so simply program their kids into a very predictable schedule.
After this spectacular Fail at trying to sleep train my son, I have since given up on any formal routine designed to “teach” my kids how to sleep. Call it a bad taste in my mouth, or just plain old wimpiness, but I just don’t have the ability to hear them cry without literally bounding through the hallway into their rooms.
Now I’m comforted by the fact that, while not every day is predictable down to the minute, we are following a routine that works best for our family. Whether bedtime happens at the same exact time of day or not, I know that we always end up where we need to be.
So tell me, do you place a high value on a strict schedule for your kids, or are your more like me—a go-with-the-flow kind of mom? I’d love to hear more in Comments below!
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