Monday, December 19, 2011

Neurosis Updated

Thank you to all who commented about my neurotic need for my children to go to bed exactly on time! (If you haven't read that post first, this one won't make much sense).

If you read the comments, you can see that they are pretty split with opposing views, and the funny part is that I agree with each and every one of them!

The thing is, I do have a need and desire for my kids to go to bed early.  Abigail wakes between 5-5:30 every day, regardless of bedtime, so it isn't an option to keep her up and have her sleep in.  However, I recognize that as something unique to our family (I know a few others have the same issues, but they are pretty rare).  I am okay with doing things differently than others, it really doesn't bother me.   Although I inquired about changing the time for Activity Day Girl meetings, I really didn't push the issue, because it makes a lot of sense to have it that way.  I recognize that if my family were a different dynamic, I would want it the way it is.  I would NOT want to come to the church at 4pm for one activity then back at 7pm for another.  I would want them combined.  If my kids were not all the same age, I would prefer it that way.  If I had a daytime job, I would want it that way.  If I had kids in middle school that didn't get home until 4:30, I would want it the way it is.  For EVERYBODY else, the timing makes a lot of sense.  It just doesn't work for us.  (And there really aren't enough girls to split the group and have 2 different meeting times).

Therefore, I did ask, and talk to some of the parents, and the leader, and the presidency, but when there was no support (which didn't surprise me, but I knew I had to at least try), I pretty quickly let it drop. 

SO- the meeting time is not going to change, and really, I don't think it should change.  However, it leaves me with my original dilemma of whether or not Abigail will go, and as Gretta pointed out, part of the reason I am so worked up about this is that in just one short year Jack and Aidan will also be expected to attend scouts, which meets at the same time, so I need to figure this out.

After thinking, and talking, and posting about this, I feel very strongly that bedtime is something that is crucial to our family happiness.  I have tried very hard this year to be not-so-neurotic about it, and quite often on the weekends we have at least one or two days where they are up later than I would like.  I try not to stress about it and just let it happen.  But when things are hectic, and behaviour is bad, I need to be vigilant about bedtimes.  I am going to take the same approach with the activity. 

I will not be sending her to the activity on a regular basis.  If there are days when behavior has been great and bedtime has been consistent for a while, and it happens to be a good night for her to go, then she will go.  If it is not so good, she will not go.  We are going to do some things for her (extra play dates, extra classes if she is interested) that will hopefully lessen the disappointment of not going, but I believe that church activities should be a supplement to family life rather than a detractor, and I also believe that in our particular family, bedtime is more important than it is in most.

Thanks for all the comments, both online and in person, and keep them coming!


Caroline said...

i heard a medicine for your disorder

Kristina said...

Do what is best for your family! That is always what you should do. At some point you may reconsider and decide that certain activities scheduled at 7 pm are good for your children, despite the time. It will only get worse as they get older, as you know. But follow the instincts/promptings you have for YOUR children. That is the best way!

csgammill said...

Shanna - I agree with you 100%. I also read Healthy Sleep.. and it has made such a difference with my girls. We are "nap nazis" at our house and as much as I would like to do play dates and other things now that I am not working, it doesn't happen. Ease her in to Activity Girls as you feel comfortable and her little body sees fit. If she can't sleep past 5:30 AM then she needs to be asleep at 7. Good luck!