Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Charlee's Night Time Routine

The other night we were sitting around my in laws table, it was getting late when the following conversation went down.

Mom: Let’s go home and go to bed.

Charlee: Can we watch Kai Lan?

Katie: I don’t like that show!!

Charlee gives Katie the evil eye.

Mom: It’s a good show. Last night, they talked about overcoming our fears and it helped Charlee sleep in her bed ALL night long.

Katie: Well, she is Foreignese.

Charlee: No, she’s not.

Mom: Actually, I think she might be Chinese.

Whining Charlee: No she’s not foreignese.

Mom: You're right Charlee, she is Chinese. (Trying to prevent a temper tantrum)

Charlee: Yeah Katie, she doesn’t have 4 knees.

EVERYONE laughs hysterically except Charlee.


As many of you know, I have struggled desperately to get Charlee out of our bed for several years now.
I have tried everything under the sun and nothing works all the time. Here’s some of the advice I have been given.

Marsha –Give her a CD player and let her listen to stories or music until she goes to sleep. Result – Hollers and complains because she wants to listen to her favorite song again or the headphones continue to fall off her teeny tiny head. Ends with Charlee getting a spanking.

Doctors—reassure her she is okay and let her scream it out. Result: I lose it and spank her for kicking, screaming and throwing a temper tantrum.

Our brilliant school psychologist -- Put her in her bed and don’t say a word. If she gets in your bed during the night put her back in the bed just before she wakes up in the morning so she thinks she spent the entire night in her bed. Where did he get his degree???? Result: What an idiot!!! My kid is a little smarter than that plus she’s a fairly light sleeper.

Tons of others—our kids still sleep in out bed. Result: The need for marriage counseling or divorce lawyer– most men like to sleep with their own wives;~)

Annie—you needed to have moved her out when she was 12 weeks old or two years old. Result: too late advice.

The advice goes on and on.

After we returned home from church camp, I knew something had to be done. And so the adventure would begin. Steven had gone on a trip to Nebraska so I knew he wouldn’t be around to be bothered with the whining, wailing and crying until she went to sleep. Unknowingly, a friend at church, Stephanie gave me the advice that has made the longest running difference in my child’s sleep patterns.

We start the evening off with a good meal, some family quality time (lol). Around 8:30 –9 o’clock, we begin the struggle with bath time and the fight to brush teeth, for most kids this is their favorite time of the evening. Not at our house. To let you know how bad it is, the pediatrician is thinking Charlee may have some sensory issues and is sending us to an occupational therapist. After we have settled down, Charlee then picks 3 books to read. We read the books while I sit or lay in her toddler size bed that is barely big enough for failure to thrive Charlee. At 10, we watch Kai Lan. I am beginning to wonder if this is a mistake.

Out of no where, she starts screaming—“I don’t want to sleep by the window, the monsters are going to get me.” I have not figured out who has taught my child about monsters--- but I will hunt them down and show them what a real monster looks like. After we have the discussion that monsters are not real. I have to get our monster spray out and demonsterize our bedroom.
I spray the windows, under the bed, under the dresser everywhere a monster might lurk. The Mr. Clean man AKA the Monster Man works to keep the monster away during the night while we sleep. Needless to say, either our house is completely free of monsters or it’s the freshest smelling house in the neighborhood. Finally around 11 o’clock she gives in and goes to sleep.

The new thing this week is for Dad to sleep on her side of the bed because he’ll kill the monsters and protect her. I am not exactly sure if we are making any progress but every night she goes to sleep in her bed. Some nights, she sleeps the entire night in her bed . But for the most part, she wakes up about 4 and gets in our bed. I typically lay her back in her bed but on occasion, I am so dead to the world that I don’t even know she's in bed with us. However, the other night the roles were reversed--I got into Charlee's bed during the middle of the night. I rolled over and landed in Charlee's bed on top of her. Steven gently grabbed me and put me back in our bed.

We returned home from church camp on June 24, Charlee’s 5th birthday. Since that night,she has gone to sleep every night since in her bed. It may have cost me a $30 trip to Build a Bear but it was completely worth it.

If you should need some monster spray for your home, it is sold locally at your nearest Hitchcock's, Walmart or Dollar General.


  1. Lordy mercy, I needed that laugh this morning! I sure don't know what to tell you about Miss Charlee. I am so so glad she is interested in sleeping her bed now and I think the monster spray idea is sheer genius! We are actually fighting the same battle with Allie. Last week when we were at the beach she slept in a pack & play crib in our room. We had to get up and get her quick when she started crying early in the morning to keep her from waking everybody in the house up with her howls and sobs. So of course we get home and she doesn't want to sleep in her own room/crib. So for the last three nights we have put her in bed at 9:30 and let her scream it out. First night-4 hrs of hell. Second night-2 1/2 hrs...Last night-1 1/2 hrs. I dream of the day when I lay her down, she rolls over and goes to sleep on her her own bed!

  2. Lol...I don't have any words of wisdom except just hang in there! She will learn and you will eventually have your bed back! I'll be praying for you and your sweet girl!


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