• The Battle Of Nap Versus Shower

    Adventures in NYC parenting take on a new dimension when Elle Belle’s refusal to nap means Mommy is always on call.

    By Elle Belle

    I always visit once a day
    But things tend to get in the way
    You make me feel as good as new
    Washing off spit and residue
    You wake me up and I feel clean
    Ready now to care for my bean…

    In our family, here’s what the typical dream sequence looks like: It’s a chilly winter afternoon and I’m just about ready for my afternoon nap. After a drink of milk and a rock in Mommy’s arms, I immediately fall asleep and stay asleep for two hours—uninterrupted. I dream of milk, milk as white as snow, and my loving family. Mommy takes a long, leisurely shower, cooks up a gourmet meal, and then watches Shark Tank while I sleep blissfully in my crib.

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    And here’s the reality: On a freezing cold January afternoon, Mommy puts me down for my  nap. Suddenly, I hear her jump in the shower. I know this because the bathroom shares a wall with my room and I know that happy sound of running water. Hey, I love bathtime as much as any other baby. I just know that Mommy is in there with the monitor on because: 1) she doesn’t trust me, and 2) she doesn’t think I know about this whole baby cam thing. (It all goes back to the time when I tried to climb out of the crib…but that’s a whole other story). I’m already awake from my nap. Who needs two-hours to sleep the afternoon away?

    Suddenly, the shower is off. But still no Mommy! Time to cry.

    Bang biscuit! Crying gets Mommy in the room. I get a big hug and she says something about it still being naptime, but no lift out of the crib. The door closes. Time to kick my feet on the headboard.

    Nothing.

    I’m not being subtle either. I wait five minutes. Still nothing.

    This stinks. I don’t even get a toy or blanket in here to comfort me (not until I’m one, Mommy says) because of SIDs—whoever that is.

    Sigh. Is naptime over yet? This is so boring. Time to start crying again!

    Mommy can surely see me in the monitor, standing and screaming in my cage…I mean crib. There is so much to learn and explore and I simply cannot waste more time napping! Doesn’t she understand what I need? I sit up to protest but she still doesn’t come get me. She seems to think all moms should have a bit of time to shower, get dressed, eat, and relax. Ha! Hasn’t she been paying attention when she reads Five Minutes’ Peace to me?

    And she actually thinks that all her mom friends have babies who nap while they shower every day, but my baby pals told me what’s up. They don’t really nap well—their moms just won’t admit it. That’s the way we babies are. Don’t they get it?

    Hurrah! Puppy pushes the door into my room to check on me. He runs in and barks, telling me that I upset Mommy and that she thinks she’s doing something wrong. Why is she always so silly like that? Sometimes, even I don’t know what I want or need. I can’t be solved like some Rubik’s Cube. Speaking of puzzles, did I just poop my diaper? Oh no! Now I really need Mommy’s time and attention!

    After what seems like an eternity, she comes to rescue me. At this point I am drowning in my own tears, sitting in poop, and gasping for breath from this lung exercise. Luckily, she gives me a big hug and kiss, changes my diaper, and cuddles me close.

    It feels so cuddly and warm in Mommy’s arms that I finally fall asleep. Maybe I did need a nap after all.

    Elle Belle is a beautiful baby girl who lives in the Upper East Side of Manhattan with her magnificent mommy, dapper dad, and her five-year-old four-legged brother (who’s adopted). She enjoys reading The Very Hungry Caterpillar, trying new foods, doing yoga, taking walks in Central Park, putting things in her mouth, and cruising around NYC in her stroller while making everyone smile wherever she goes. She can be reached LilElleBelle@gmail.com and found on tugsonmyheartstrings.blogspot.com

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