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The Indoor Stairs Workout (Or, Trying to Get My Baby to Nap in Her Crib)

I’ve got a workout for you to try. The only thing you need is a baby, a crib and a set of stairs.

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Now that we’ve passed the newborn-sleep-everywhere-and-anywhere stage, I’m trying to get my 4-month-old angel of a baby on a regular sleep schedule. She’s falling into a pattern and getting predictably tired at more regular intervals throughout the day, so I figured that instead of letting her sleep in a bouncer or on me, I’d start trying to get her to take naps in her crib.

And the angel baby laughs in my face.

After a series of frustrating days when I tried to keep the big kids quiet(er) so I could get the baby to sleep upstairs in her bedroom — and a frustrating series of nights when she would wake up within .004 seconds of being put down into her crib (seriously, I did it for three hours one night …) — I decided that instead of driving myself absolutely insane and working against her clear and extremely strong instinct to be in my arms, I’d embrace that instinct and work with her, not against her. Last night when she wouldn’t sleep after an hour of my husband attempting to get her down, I brought her into bed next to me, lights on, while I read and worked. She didn’t budge for hours.

Even though it’s frustrating to not be able to put the baby down for a nap in her bed, it’s more frustrating to put her down and run upstairs every 10 minutes for hours on end. Although it is one heck of a workout! I’m just trying to remind myself that every frustrating baby stage is short-lived. Today, it’s that she won’t sleep in her crib. Tomorrow, she’ll be like her older brother and not sleep in her big bed — and then demand all of my blankets when she climbs in next to me at 5 a.m.

Today, as I write this, she’s fallen asleep in my lap, her head supported by my thigh, perched perfectly in my crossed legs. My hands are free to type. My feet may be asleep, but so is she.

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Full lap.

What’s your most frustrating bedtime battle? Although the baby is frustrating at times, the overnight tantrums we’ve been dealing with lately with the 2-year-old are so much worse. Erin

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