Dropping the Final Nap. Or, The Day the Music Died.

4 years ago

Dark days are upon us in the James household. And I'm not talking about the RSV and Pneumonia that had Eliza hacking her way through last week. (All the Ladies James got version of the illness. We're better now.)

I'm talking about the fact that LIV HAS DROPPED HER NAP.

Lemme say that again. My daughter is no longer taking regular naps.

Where, oh where, in the baby sleep books does it say that kids don't nap until they go to kindergarten?! I missed the memo. Probably didn't read that far. I was caught off-guard. I'm still recovering.

I have friends who have gone through this change with grace and ease. I fought it for months. Finally, after weeks of really dreading naptime, after employing the stealth tactics of both "mean mommy" and the M&M incentive, to no avail, I allowed the thought to cross my mind. Maybe she's done with napping.

But she's not 16. Or 8. Or even 4.

Oh snap.

Spending "naptime" arguing with my daughter, wagging my finger at her and whispering in harsh tones, it just wasn't fun. But I wasn't ready to let her stay up all day. I've always planned on instituting a "rest hour" when the nap phase was over. I just thought it would be at least a year down the road. So I tried to get her to read books in her bed, or play quietly. But Liv is not an independent child, she's a very social first-born.

Out of desperation, I tried letting her watch a show on the iPad. And it worked.

But I do not want to be a mom who's child spends her rest time watching shows on the iPad! I want to be a mom who's child spends rest time flipping through books, or making shadow puppets on the wall, or quietly reorganizing her sock drawer. So I fought it some more.

Then one day I was gone, and Daddy was in charge. He put Liv down for her rest time. She was quiet. She stayed quiet. When she called for me, I went up to congratulate her and let her come downstairs. I opened the door and found her quietly watching her show, laying in her giant, tree-shaped tent on her bed.


Liza likes to climb in too.

I came downstairs with a puzzled look on my face and Duff said, "Hey, it worked!"


And that is how we've managed since the tragic dropping of the nap.





Am I alone in being startled by a napless three-year-old? How have the rest of you dealt with it, or seen it handled? Am I rotting my baby's brain by letter her watch a show in her tent during rest time? How many licks does it take to get to the center of a Tootsie Roll Pop?

Cross posted at



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