My children and sleep have always had an interesting relationship. I suspect that most parents find this to be true, but just for the sake of argument, let me offer a few examples:
When M1 was two (and three and four and part of five), he got up. A lot. We would put him to bed when he got tired, which was (is still sometimes) around 7 p.m., and he would bounce out of bed like a jumping bean on crack until he literally crashed at his doorway, usually sometime around 11. Since he needed (still needs sometimes) about 12-14 hours of sleep a day, this was a problem.
M2 quit napping WAY earlier than M1. He would still nap on almost a daily basis in kindergarten, assuming he was separated from the other kids so he'd shut up for the five seconds it took him to sack out. She hasn't napped since she was barely 2. The days were few and far between when M2's preschool teacher would tell me that they *think* she *might* have slept, though sometimes they weren't entirely sure if she was sleeping or just actually being quiet for a few minutes.
Today, sleep has been an interesting challenge. M1 woke up grouchy this morning. We didn't have anywhere to go today, so when we got back to the house after dropping M2 off - SHE was as cheerful as the Flight Attendant Barbie on Toy Story 2 - I asked him if he wanted to nap. He said yes. He went to his room and tossed and turned for 45 minutes before *I* got sick and tired of listening to him thrash and came and told him to get moving, boy, we got school to do. And he did fine. After we finished our work, he asked if he could get his sleeping bag out of the top of his closet. Eh, sure, why not. He asked if he could put his pajamas back on. I saw no harm in this. He burrowed into his sleeping bag and cinched the top shut (I kept a close eye on this process, by the way) and told me he was a worm and was going to hibernate under the soil for the winter.
Peachy keen, jelly bean, let me know when spring arrives.
Except the worm never did hold still. I finally sent him to his room because again, the thrashing. He kicked and squirmed around in there for 'rest time' and became cranky again by oh, say, 4:30 p.m.
He got sent to bed at 5:30 after a light dinner of a banana and granola. He'll wake up in the morning and want to eat everything in sight, but I'd rather deal with a starving, happy, well-rested boy in the morning than a not-so-hungry, grouchy, tired boy at night.
Then there's the girl. She's back to fussing every evening and bargaining for a spot in my room (read: bed) at night. She had stayed in her own bed for the required five nights and demanded her reward this evening. Didn't ask; demanded. And she didn't want Daddy to tuck her in; she wanted Mommy. She was prepared to scream to high heaven till she got what she wanted. I'm amazed she didn't rouse the boy. She was squalling much like the weather around here. She didn't win, but she's in my room, on the floor (she lost that battle, too), talking to herself. If she sleeps, I'll be content.
The only question remaining is, can I go to bed yet?