If you happened to visit our household for a week, you’d think that my kids were part of some secret government sleep deprivation program.
If someone were to say to ME ‘hey buddy, wanna take a mid-day nap or maybe even sleep in a nice comfy bed for 8 eight hours?’ I’d be snoring so hard and fast that the drapes would be flying off the curtain rods like we were in a category 4 hurricane.
Sleeping is beautiful and amazing and probably ranks in my top 3 things to do of all-time.
My kids? My kids are lunatics. They share a different view.
Even the slightest mention of having to go to bed and rest their eyes is met with a full-blown kicking and screaming battle. You’d think that I asked them to eat poop or file my taxes.
It’s not like we don’t have a routine or anything.
How about this? How about I lay out our process and you can be the judge of whether or not we’re missing something.
As it stands right now, I feed the kids dinner around 6pm, they pinch, poke and prod each other while picking at their food like chickadees while playing house with Captain America, the Hulk and My Little Pony figurines. I threaten to take their toys away if they don’t eat their carrots and after about an hour, my wife gets home.
Together, we normally bathe the kids and tag team the madness of getting them into their pajamas as they run around the room like little nude rodeo clowns.
We try to slow things down, as Jen nurses Mason and I read Ava and Charlie one or two books. I’ve got to be honest, I let them choose the reading selection which normally turns out working against me. They somehow manage to pick the thickest, fattest Encyclopedia Britannica-looking book from the shelf. As I sigh and roll my eyes at my wife, she tells me ‘to skip a few pages, they’ll never know’.
While I appreciate her suggestion, my conscience can’t withstand the guilt, so I suffer through Pinkalicious all the way until the end. I lay them down, each in their own bed and we knock out a few prayers. I turn on the night lights, lob out a few ‘I love yous’ and head downstairs to finally eat dinner.
Then the fun begins. For some reason, both kids feel the absolute need to remain anywhere but their bed.
I can get them to sleep ANYWHERE other than their beds.
They sleep on the stairs.
They sleep on the backs of the restaurant booths.
They sleep in their jumpers.
They sleep in the pool.
So what am I doing wrong? Anything? Nothing? Is this type of thing happening all across the country, including inside your home?
I’ve polled my neighbors and friends. I’ve heard of parents reversing the locks of their doors specifically to keep children locked inside their rooms. I mean, look, I’m all for finding creative ways to get these kids to sleep, but I’m not a psycho – is that really safe to lock them in like caged animals?
Guess what? I’m not the only one suffering through this crazy routine.
Killian Rieder is a Minneapolis mom and entrepreneur behind the Elo Storytime pillow. In an interview with the Twin Cities Business, she recalled the one to two hour process of getting her 2-year old to bed each night. I HEAR YA, SISTER.
The Elo is a pressure sensitive pillow that plays soothing stories and music as long as the child’s head remains on the pillow. If their head is lifted off, Elo gently prompts them to lay back down to hear the rest of the story. When I heard about this invention, I had to try it out for myself.
BY NO MEANS, is this meant as a replacement for my own personal story time with my kids, however, it does present itself as a good option for those times when they need a little extra time to fall asleep on their own.
The pillow comes with 5 pre-loaded stories, including Clifford the Small Red Puppy, Pirates Love Parades and a few other titles. The pillow has a built-in WiFi (sorry, but hey Silicon Valley, why can’t I control my kids with my phone yet?) and by using the Elo app on your smartphone, you can adjust the volume and buy/download your choice from dozens of available selections.
I’m even hearing rumors that the next generation pillow will soon allow you to record your own voice to tell the stories… this might come in handy when you’re away on business and can’t be there for story time…
So what happened when I introduced my zombie children to the Elo?
Honestly, they got super excited. Over the last few days, they’re actually been excited to ‘use their pillow’. Sure, they’ve still come downstairs once or twice after being put to bed, so it’s not a magical cure, but I feel like this pillow is promoting healthy sleep and enticing them to keep their head on the bed.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Hey! It’s me, the editor. Just so you know, I teamed up with Life of Dad for this #BedtimeBattle promotion.