Farewell to the Nap – A Love Letter

Naptime…you were a long time coming. When my baby was an infant you would rarely hang around for more than 20 minutes at a stretch. For a long time I was convinced I would never be blessed with the pleasure of long stretches of your company. But eventually you and my child reconciled your differences, and you came around to visit our house on a daily basis, first twice a day and then once a day for a beautiful 2-3 hour stretch.

Naptime 1

My kid is 3 and a half now, and you’ve been coming to our home like clockwork for most of that time. Every day from 1-3 I enjoyed a quiet house while you enveloped my toddler in beautiful slumber. Some days you even stuck around a little longer, allowing me time for a cup of tea after completing whatever chores that needed to be done that day. For all these hours I am eternally grateful.

But did I do something wrong? For the last several months you have been skipping our house on occasion. We have kept up the routine of quiet time in a darkened room, but a few times a week you have failed to make your regular appearance. In the last week you haven’t visited our house at all. And I miss you.

I know what you will say, there comes a time in every relationship where it time for those involved to part ways. That it’s not me, it’s just that my son no longer needs you like he used to. And that I will learn to adjust to this new normal in time. And sure, there will be benefits. No more worrying about interrupting afternoon activities to be sure we are ready for your arrival. Earlier bedtimes, and perhaps an occasional Saturday morning sleep-in. These are all good things, and I know we are ready to move into this next phase of childhood. And I’m sure we will see you again from time to time when you know your presence is needed again.

But I will miss your daily visit. Together we cleaned kitchens, did laundry, painted bathrooms, studied, read books, telephoned friends, and even occasionally caught me up on some much needed sleep. I will have to get used to this new normal, where the best I can hope for is an hour of quiet time with one ear trained on the upstairs, listening for tell tale sounds of preschool mischief.

So naptime, farewell. We have enjoyed your visits over the years, and will miss you now that you have moved on. I hope that you do not forget us forever, and that you will visit on those days when you are needed the most.  And when we add another member to the family, we would love to see you regularly again. Because together we can do great things, and I’ll admit your presence is just as important for me as it is for the kids. Until then naptime, it’s been a good run. Don’t be a stranger.

Sarah Bengtson
Sarah is a proud Iowa native who currently lives in North Liberty with her husband and 2 sons. She grew up in rural Benton county and moved to the Iowa City area in 2005 to attend graduate school at the University of Iowa in Physical Therapy. Now she balances raising two growing boys with a work as a pediatric physical therapist. Outside of work and family, Sarah loves music, playing her cello, running, baking, crochet, church activities, and cheering for the Hawkeyes and the Minnesota Vikings.


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