Go to bed.

Recently, I arose at about 2:30 in the morning because our cat, Cleo, was having a fit about something. A bunch of meowing. Probably bored or hungry. As I walked from my bedroom, I saw a dim light on in my daughter’s room, glowing from under her door. I actually walked back to my bedroom and squinted at my alarm clock to make sure I wasn’t wrong about the time. This is not good because I have to get really close to the glowing numerals being I am quite blind without my specs, and I’ve read about how looking at glowing things can be a detriment to peaceful slumber. Anyway, after confirming, I opened her door and hissed, “Get that light off this instant!” She slammed her reader shut, startled by my sudden appearance, and I stumbled off to attend to the cat. 

Five hours later, as she dragged herself from her room, groggy, I said, “I just feel that you are effectively shooting yourself in the foot by staying up that late. You have a Chem test!” 

She mumbled, “You know I studied…”

Me: “And you are doing yourself no favor at all by approaching it with so little sleep.”

I received a look that resembled a snarl coupled with exasperation.

Will the battle between child and parent ever end when it comes to sleep habits? I think not. Consider this: I don’t dictate to my columnists exactly what they should write about for each issue. They get a general idea from my editorial calendar (this month being—I’ll bet you can guess by the cover—my Baby Issue), but the choice is theirs whether to follow that topic or not. 

Between last month and this month, three of my columnists have now approached the thorny subject of sleep: Sean Toren in August, and Joy Riggs and Shannon Keough this month. No one knew what the other was writing about but it sure tells me that just as the earth revolves around the sun, they way one person sleeps in a household affects how most of the others do. Of course, bonus points to my husband, Mark, who seems to be able to sleep through tornado sirens and thunderstorms without any issue at all.

This month, Shannon revisits a topic she broached last year at this time but with new insight, getting baby onto a sleep schedule; and Joy talks about school start times and their effect on attendance and depression. I hope these articles help with your happy family slumber!