Sleep has been as good as I could have hoped for from an almost-2-year-old toddler, despite the fact that we’re going through another sleep regression. Its been a long time since our last regression, and I think this, the 2 year regression, is the last one to expect! It’s funny to contemplate how chilled out I am about a sleep regression now, considering how anxious and upset I would get over the early ones in her first year.
When we were in the throes of terrible infant and baby sleep, I used to tell myself that I could survive until she was 2 1/2, if that’s how long it took for her to sleep through the night. Although she doesn’t consistently sleep through the night – and this week has been waking every 2 hours again – we get a LOT more sleep than we used to. And bedtime is a relaxing thing now, where we lay with her and read books, and stay with her while she falls asleep. It takes 20 minutes to an hour, depending on the length of the books she picks (she gets 5 books), and how wired she is from the day.
Speaking of laying with your toddler while they fall asleep, I’ve noticed a difference in acceptable sleep-aiding behaviour for toddlers than what was considered acceptable for babies. Why was I told by society-at-large (and family and friends) that I was creating bad habits by sleeping next to by baby, by nursing her to sleep, by rocking her to sleep and then laying her down in her crib… But now, by lying with her as she falls asleep in her bed, I’m just working with her toddler needs? It seems that everyone in my social circle lays with their young children while they fall asleep, and it’s considered to be just the way it is at bedtime for toddlers.
Is it because the parents who had challenging baby-sleepers took a couple of years to stop fighting and give in to what their kids were asking for? Or is it because even babies who slept well on their own grew into toddlers who wanted extra comfort and connection at bedtime?
Regardless, sleep, in all its stages from good to challenging, is something I feel like we finally have down pat. We’re old pro’s.