Wednesday, June 4, 2008

The Early Bird Gets the Grief

We are a family of late sleepers. At least we used to be. I've always been most grateful to have babies that sleep well. When George & Joshua were babies, they would get up, eat, and go back to sleep until late into the morning. And that worked great for me, as I am not a morning person but a hardcore night owl (case in point - it is now 3:12am). Blake seems to follow that pattern as well.

For about a year or more, we had a consistent get-up time of around 9:00am. Or it would be somewhere between 9:00-9:30. And if they stayed up late or missed a nap, we could sometimes count on a 10:00am wakeup (bliss!), or even later. Then over the past 6 months or so (late into pregnancy for me, of course), we had a shift in the morning rise time. It started being 8:30am. Consistently. For a while. Then it went back to 8:00am. Which was fine with me - 8:00am is a perfectly reasonable time. In fact, it would be my preferred time, because it's not too early and not too late.

Once the baby came home, it seemed like suddenly the wake-up time switched yet again, to 7:30am or so. I started lamenting these changes. What a cruel thing to do! And the fact is that it's just George that is doing all of the getting-up. It's like a switch was turned on (or off), and suddenly he is an early bird that cannot sleep late. Josh could sleep a lot later, if George would let him. In fact, the whole house would sleep later if George didn't get up early.

And Daylight Savings Time has really done a number on us. We went from 8:00pm bedtime (sometimes 8:30) to a 9:30pm bedtime(sometimes 9:00) . And guess what? George still gets up at 7:30am. And now it seems that no matter what time they go to bed he wants to get up that early. And even if they skip a nap, he gets up that early. Granted, he will most likely take a good nap the next day, but he still maintains the consistent 7:30am wake-up time. I think the latest we can get him to sleep (like on the weekends) is 8:30am, if we're very lucky (which is not often). So we strive for an 8:00-8:30pm bedtime whenever possible.

I guess there could be benefits to him being an early riser. When he gets older I can make it one of his chores to make coffee (or breakfast for that matter - dream big!) before I get up. Or he can make sure the rest of us get up on time should we do the habitual snooze button routine. But for now I'm just going to have to start getting myself to bed earlier and try not to deem him the black sheep for his sleeping habits.

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