Liam has never been a great sleeper. For the first 3 months we couldn't wake him up, and ever since then we've had trouble keeping him asleep. We first succumbed to alternative sleep solutions when Liam was only 9 months, in the hopes of not losing our ever-loving minds. The crib became storage for stuffed animals and we started co-sleeping. And it worked for us, until Liam was 3ish.... when I woke up with a perfect foot-shaped bruise just above my left kidney and we deemed it time to transition into his own bed.
The transition took us almost 2 years before he could get into his bed by himself and fall asleep.
Then we had another bout of night terrors, some sleepwalking and just night after night of interrupted sleep. After 8 years, you kinda expect the "baby" to be sleeping through the night. This is something that is not covered in any of the parenting books that I've read.
So when we added ADHD medication to the mix this summer, we were a little worried. One of the main side effects of pretty much ALL the ADHD meds is difficulty sleeping. And we were right to be worried. Liam's bedtime was creeping later and later... from 8:00 to 11:00. He would be in bed but awake, calling down, needing water, books, cuddles or letting his mind wander into worst case scenarios (fire, plague, war....) and causing himself great anxiety. He was also waking up through the night, so nobody was getting any rest.
Until we discovered the best solution ever!
Sweet, wonderful melatonin. How we love thee. 2 little tablets, dissolved under his tongue, and Liam is asking to go to bed within 20 minutes and is out like a light! He is back to an 8:00 bedtime, and after brushing, reading and a quick cuddle he is out by 8:30. Which makes for happy mothers and a well rested boy. And since melatonin is a natural product that your body produces anyway, there are no side effects and it is not addictive. Win-Win-Win in my mind!
Now if I could stop watching TV shows that are on too late and get to bed earlier myself, I might be well rested too!