One corner of High Wycombe is fast becoming a go-to destination for parents of preschool aged children.
Our nearly three-year-old Tilly has become unusually clingy at bedtime, refusing to go off to sleep without me staying in her room. At the same time her night-time sleeping started going downhill too with night waking becoming all too regular. As the sleep problems grew, I decided to it was time to try the gradual retreat technique.
It’s wonderful to hear your small child say I love you for the first time. It melts your heart. However to begin with you know that they’re just repeating the words don’t really understand what they’re saying. The months pass, their vocabulary and comprehension expands exponentially and then, one day, they say those magic words for themselves. That was my experience today.
I thought we had a deal, you and me. You’d manage ten hours at night and top up with a hearty daytime nap. Yet what do we have now but ever earlier waking and signs of dropping your nap. Now you’ve left me second-guessing our routine and we both know that one false move will see it all come crashing down around our ears.
The big day arrived. Cards and presents were opened, candles blown out on the cake, but nothing happened. We had expected a transformation in the manner of Harry Enfield’s Kevin character becoming a teenager, albeit with our one year old becoming a ‘terrible two’. Of course it doesn’t work like that; we’ve been experiencing certain characteristics of those terrible twos for some time. Now, a few weeks into her third year, we’re beginning to get a taste of what two-year-old is all about and it’s a fascinating place…