After writing about my frustrations around bedtime, I resolved to enjoy putting my sons to bed last night. And I’m happy to report that things went very well. All I did was change my own perspective. Rather than focusing on a particular outcome (getting them to sleep so I can go to bed), I opened my heart to whatever the evening would bring. I got myself ready for bed so that I could just fall asleep in my son’s bed if necessary. And I decided that I would relax and enjoy the time we had together.
It did turn out to be very enjoyable. (What a coincidence! 😉 ) I read a book to Lucas (3). Then Lucas said he wanted to know how to read, so Sammy (9) decided to start teaching him. For about an hour, Sammy painstakingly went through every word in Blue Hat, Green Hat, and Lucas stayed attentive the entire time. Sammy got exasperated a few times (what do you expect from a 3-year-old, Sammy?), but Lucas was still enjoying himself. And so they persisted. After all of that, I think they were both a bit tuckered out.
When I say it “went very well”, it wasn’t because Lucas did anything particularly different. It was because I changed my own perspective. (Ironically, he also went to sleep earlier than usual. Perhaps he was expecting to feel my normal resistance, and, finding none, just relaxed.) Even if he had stayed up extra late, my intention was still to remain calm and enjoy every moment I had with him.
Stay tuned for the next bedtime report.
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