When I wrote about Ella's first day of school, Steve had picked her up before nap time, so I did not yet know how nap time was going to go. Well. On her 2nd day, she did not sleep at all the entire time. The teacher told Steve that she rested very nicely on her mat the whole time, but didn't fall asleep. Steve picked her up early enough that she was still able to get a nap in for the day, so although it wasn't her normal schedule, she was okay for the rest of the day.
That night I asked her how nap time went and here are some of things she told me:
"Ella, no playing toys now - it's night-night"
"Rest time, fall asleep please"
"Mat is ouchie"
"Ame (= Miss Erin), Ella mat rest time"
Hmm, this sort of revealed to me that Ella was a little more active during rest time than we were imagining. They do sleep on mats, but they look very thick and comfy, but certainly not as good as a crib which is what Ella still sleeps in. But, according to Ella the mat is "ouchie."
On Friday, Ella did not sleep a wink again, and this time a very monstrous Ella came out on Friday night - whew, I can barely even explain how unhappy she was - cranky, shrieky, yelling, whiny, screechy, all at the same time - yikes! We knew she was just totally exhausted by that point.
Until last week, we put Ella down around 9:00 pm for bed time each night, but if she was up later it was no big deal, and she'd always still be happy and cheerful because she'd catch up during naptime the next day. But we decided her pre-school bedtime should be 8pm and we're getting closer and closer to that goal.
Over the weekend I talked to Ella about nap time and how she wasn't falling asleep and what would make it easier for her to fall asleep. And she said "blankie". She has her binky, sheet from her crib, and a blanket from her crib, but it is not her one-and-only blankie that is her true blankie. I had purposely not sent this one because I have a horrible vision of leaving it there one day and then she'll be up all night. I decided to give her a few days into this week and if she was still not sleeping, to come up with some alternate ideas.
After a very rough drop-off this morning (that is a whole other post in itself), I was thinking about Ella all morning and called school around lunch time to check in and see how things were going. Miss Erin told me that Ella was resting very nicely on her mat. I asked her if there are other kids in the class that don't sleep, and she said "yes, there are 2, but they don't rest like Ella. She is TRULY resting - she closes her eyes, lays on her belly, she just doesn't fall asleep." While I was happy she is a good rest-er, I still want her to have the renewing effect of an actual NAP. Then Miss Erin said to me "does Ella have a favorite blanket at home? She is asking for a different blanket."
In about point two milliseconds I decided that blankie is going to school tomorrow and I'll just deal with the consequences later. I might just throw Snoopy in for good measure. I feel bad that I purposely witheld something that I knew would make her more comfortable because I'm trying to 'wean' her from being so reliant on these comfort items. I was planning on pulling the plug on binkie in about 2 weeks but now I'm rethinking that whole idea and feel like I just need to focus on making Ella feel as secure and confident as possible in this time of transition.
At any rate, she did end up falling asleep today at nap time - for about 20 minutes -and then woke up with a fever :(. I was on a call but saw the school's name come up on my caller ID and couldn't get off the phone fast enough. I know the system works though because when I didn't pick up the phone, they called someone else in the office to track me down, which was exactly what I had asked them to do, so I was glad to see that. Erin told me that Ella woke up from her nap very flushed and not wanting to wake up, and she took her temperature and it was 100.8. I know this is certainly not an emergency temperature, but Ella never gets fevers and hasn't been sick in over a year, so I was really worried. I left work to go get her and she definitely did not seem her happy and cheery self. When we were driving home I asked her how school was and she said it was good but said "Mommy, blankie at school please." Sheesh, good thing I had already decided on that one!
She perked up a lot once we got home, but still felt a little warm all night, although she has no other symptoms of anything. I put her down for bed right around 8pm so I'm hoping that a really good night of sleep will be good for her. I will see how she's doing in the morning, hopefully she'll feel the same or better ansd not worse.
First sickness on her 4th day in school, yikes. I knew to expect she'd get sick once she was exposed to all the new school germs, but didn't know it would happen quite so fast. And of course it's not fair to point a finger at 'rest time' for her getting a fever, but so far this rest time has not been a good thing!