Childrearing

Putting A Toddler To Bed In 100 Easy Steps

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If you have a toddler, you understand that putting him to bed at the end of a long day can sometimes feel like a big, fat, eff you. The crazy bursts of energy, the begging, the pleading, the crying — why does it have to be so hard? Why? Does anyone know the answer to that question?

If you have one of those kids who has been sleeping through the night since you brought him home from the hospital, please refrain from rubbing it in. Here is what a typical night getting a toddler to sleep is like for the rest of us (or at least me) — in 100 steps.

1. Notice it is dark outside.

2. Mention bed time.

3. Listen to screams of “no” for approximately five minutes.

4. Find pajamas.

5. Chase toddler around the dining room table.

6. Catch him.

7. Try to figure out where you left the pajamas you just picked out.

8. Lay him down on your bed.

9. Get pajama bottoms over his ankles.

10. Try to stop him from thrashing like a fish out of water long enough to get his pajama pants up.

11. Start sweating.

12. Chase him around the bedroom.

13. Get him back on your bed.

14. Attempt to get his pajama top over his head.

15. Sweat more.

16. Wonder where he got his He-Man-like strength when it takes you a full minute to pry one of his arms away from his body far enough to slip it into his pajamas.

17. Swear silently when he makes if off the bed with one arm hanging out of his pajama top.

18. Chase him around the bed again.

19. Catch him.

20. Bite back tears.

21. Feel more accomplished than you have all day when you finally get his second arm into his pajamas.

22. Wonder why you decided to have children to begin with.

23. Think about your friend Tina who is traveling through Spain right now with nothing but a backpack and a dream.

24. Start to hate Tina.

25. Sit down and daydream about that trip you took to Europe when you were 22.

26. Wonder whatever happened to that guy you met on the boat from Italy to Greece.

27. Jar back to reality when you see your kid has wandered into the living room and attempted to turn on the TV.

28. Remember that you forgot to DVR Bachelor In Paradise.

29. DVR Bachelor In Paradise.

30. Start looking for your child.

31. Wonder if you can just let him wander around the house until he passes out from exhaustion.

32. Decide that’s probably not a sound idea.

33. Try to lure him into his bedroom with a book of his choosing.

34. Wrack your brain when he mentions one you haven’t seen in months.

35. Find it.

36. Try not to fly into a rage when he mentions the title of another book as soon as he sees you’ve found the one he’s asked for.

37. Read it aloud slowly while ignoring his pleas for another book.

38. Tuck him in.

39. Agree to recite Good Night Moon from memory.

40. Agree again.

41. Recite it one more time.

42. Back out of the room slowly.

43. Affix baby gate.

44. Walk to the kitchen.

45. Pour yourself a glass of wine.

46. Remove toys from your favorite spot on the couch.

47. Sit down.

48. Turn on TV.

49. Wonder why they say the word “Journey” so much on Bachelor shows.

50. Judge yourself momentarily for watching The Bachelor franchise at all.

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