When he signals it’s time for bed, we take him up. No set bedtime, but he happens to want to go to bed around the same time every day.
We have our little ritual that helps to gently transition from day to night. We play, sing, laugh, cuddle, honor and care for the body, read a book, take deep breaths to release the busyness of the day, drink milk.
Some days he’s already asleep before I put him into bed. Some days he is still awake, and we just look and smile at each other for a while, while we play with each other’s hands.
When he’s ready for sleep, he turns his head the other way, or he lets his eyelids drop while looking at me.
Some days he falls asleep lightly, and first wakes a couple of times to see if I’m still there, or he needs my hand on his chest to calm down. Some days he’s directly in deep sleep and not even the neighbors’ big noisy motorcycle wakes him up.
Some days he has a bit more emotion to express, or is a bit overtired. Then we pick him up, do some walking and rocking, or whatever we feel he might need, until he calms down and signals he wants to be in his bed again. Most of the time he then falls asleep immediately.
Patience, presence, connection, trust.
When I surrender to these qualities, bedtime with him is a treat to myself as well.
No rush, no need for him to fall asleep quickly because I want to do this or that.
Just quality time, sharing a moment, being there for what is needed. Understanding a baby also has a big world of feelings, and the nighttime can wake up many things in him that might just be needing some extra sweetness, care, togetherness.
Caring for a baby, to me, has many similarities in caring for your own inner children. You can’t force them into feeling safe or ready. You cán shape a safe space and warm invitation, so they can relax when they feel ready.
Bonus of our little nighttime ritual (on most days): It really relaxes me into my evening! 🧘🏼♀️
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