learning to fall asleep

From “The Land of Nod” by Robert Louis Stevenson:

From Breakfast on through all the day
At home among my friends I stay,
But every night I go abroad
Afar into the land of Nod.

All by myself I have to go,
With none to tell me what to do–
All alone beside the streams
And up the mountain-sides of dreams.

“Learning to fall asleep.” I know that’s a weird title for this post, but it’s not about me. It’s about my daughter, Lillia. She’s nine years old and, up until a few days ago, she couldn’t put herself to sleep. Every night I would lay down with her until she fell asleep. As a mama that didn’t really bother me. I love to snuggle with my kids.


Lillia listening to an audiobook of The Hobbit.

However, lately I noticed that it was taking longer and longer for her to fall asleep, and by the time I got out of her bed it was almost 10 o’clock. And, then I still had to put the baby to bed! Between homeschooling and full-time mothering, I don’t get much time to myself. Okay, I get no time to myself. But, neither does my poor husband, who works full-time and then fathers full-time when he gets home. I know it’s hard for him, and with Lillia taking so long to fall asleep it was pushing his “alone time” out. He was staying up later than he wanted to during the week, and then he was tired in the morning.

I knew that Lillia would have to learn to fall asleep…by herself. And, you know what? It’s working! For the past four nights she has fallen asleep by herself. The first three nights were really hard, but we have come to a compromise where I read to her (which I always do anyway) and then I stay in her bed with her for 10 minutes. I scratch her back, get her settled, but then I leave before she falls asleep. Now she is in bed by 9:00, which allows Damian to have down time (a.k.a. sanity) without having to stay up until midnight.

Small victories.

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Kelli Ann Wilson

Kelli lives in rural New Hampshire with her husband Damian and their two children. She works as a writer, and in her free time enjoys reading, gardening, taking pictures, walking in the woods, and celebrating the seasons of nature and the feasts, festivals, and holy days of the Christian year.

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