I remember being a little kid myself playing around with time, especially time for bed. I always had reasons to have more time to postpone the bed time. If it did not work, I pretended to close my eyes to make my parents believe I was asleep already. I guess, I was a pretty good little actress. When my parents, especially my mom left the room, the ‘quiet party’ began! I did whatever I think was fun doing quietly. I only stopped doing whatever I was doing, when my mom knocked firmly on my door tellimg me to sleep. I was wondering how she knew I was having a quiet party? hmm the magical power of being a mom.
Being a mom myself is full of lessons to learn. I am even learning about myself better and better each day. I read articles about kids’ development charts to give me some ideas about my daugher’s developments:whether she is on the right track. Being a kid at her age, 3,5 years old, who speaks already like adults sometimes, makes me realize how fast time flies. She recently has a habit of making some excuses to postpone the before-bed routines.
‘Ich habe keine Zeit zum schlafen’ : I have no time to sleep.
‘Ich mag keine schlafen’ : I don’t like sleeping
are two of her common expressions when it comes to bed time. My husband and I have been doing before-bed routines since she was a one-day old. I believe routines help children be more manageable. It proves to be true. The thing is, the older the kids are, the better they are at languages, the more creative they are at making such excuses when it comes to bed time. I guess it means the more patience the parents should have, and of course the smarter the parents should be to win the battle of this nighttime game. I am not sure whether ‘battle’ is a proper word in this case. I guess I call it a ‘battle’ only when I am deadly tired, and my kid is still playing around with bed time.
Our daughter is actually pretty accustomed to the routines we have applied to her since she was a one-day old. She often asks me ‘Is it a bed time yet?’, when I firmly say YES, there you go, she will say those two commin expressions above while running around, giggling, asking me to play hide-and-seek.
In the end, as we lie her on the bed, she is still willing to play around with the bed time. We never forget to say ‘We love you’ before bed, and give kisses as well. We say short and firm ‘Gute Nacht’ or good night, and when she is in the mood of playing around with bed time, she says ‘guty nacht’ or deliberately mispronunce words, pretending that she was making mistakes in saying words.
The other night, I had it enough with her playing around. She deliberately mispronunced the word, gute nacht, for example. Instead of telling her to say the correct one, we turned off the light and left the room.She yelled, and protested :
Hey, I haven’t said the correct word yet!
It somehow made me laugh, but I held it. She knew she made mistakes intentionaly, but honey, when it’s Gute Nacht means Gute Nacht.
I came again in her room with the lights off, and said : I know what you mean, now it’s time to bed.
I’d say to her secretly: Honey, this is not the proper time to learn a language. I know you know you are deliberately making the mistake, so that you have a few more seconds, if lucky,minutes to play around. But, my dear, you need your sleep or else you would not enjoy your time in the kindergarten the next morning. Besides, I need time to do other stuff too, my dear. Sleep well, and sweet dreams
And she slept soundless!
Image : Pooh