Saturday, 11 May 2013

Operation ReClaim Our Bed

Some of you may remember a few months ago when we tried to get Chubs sleeping in her cot more. I'm a huge huge fan of cosleeping, and I'm sure that we all get much more sleep that way. It's looked different for us at different stages, but it was getting to the stage where Chubs was just getting too big. Through Operation Sleep Rule Change we tried to gently transition Chubs into her cot more. However, after a little while it was apparent that the plan wasn't working and she just wasn't ready. I wasn't prepared to make the smallest, youngest and most vulnerable member of our family carry the biggest burden of 'making sleep work' for the whole family, so we abandoned the plan.

We went back to what we were doing - usual bedtime routine finishing with Chubs feeding to sleep on our bed. I would then transfer her to her cot where she slept happily until she work anywhere between 11pm and 4am. She would then come into our bed for a quick feed and cuddles and we all went back to sleep. Sometimes she took up too much room and Dear Husband or I relocated somewhere else for a few hours or the rest of the night. In our minds musical beds is much much much better than sleep deprivation.

Six or seven months passed, and (as they always do) things changed. Chubs is getting bigger and older. Her language skills have developed dramatically, so we can explain things more than we could in the past. She is also getting physically bigger and can easily take up a queen sized bed if she wants to -sigh. We always intended to buy her a bedroom suite when she turned two so we just moved that forward a little bit.

We intentionally bought her a trundle bed, firstly to facilitate more comfortable sleep sharing and secondly because we don't have a guest bedroom. So, we ordered the furniture, packed away the cot and got her new room ready.

Two new mattresses (bed and trundle)
New drawers and new bedside table (covered with white doona)

A fortunate complication occured. The bed was on back order, so while the mattresses and drawers were delivered in a few days, we had to wait a few weeks for the bed. This means that Chubs' room was set up like above for the first few weeks.

During this time, she fed to sleep on her mattress. Later on I joined her on the trundle mattress. Everyone was very happy with this arrangment. She certainly tried testing the new situation to see what the rules were - she would get up and walk out of the room at bed time, but after being directed back in she eventually learned that that endeavour was not going to be successful.

Whilst I did miss sharing a bed with Dear Husband for these few weeks, it's a good reminder that I like to share a bed with someone else for comfort, too. I'm a fully grown adult, who understands object permanence, who is well adjusted and emotionally secure (apparently) and who know how to ask for help. And I still LIKE to share a bed. If our family needed to split up its sleeping, I think that it is fairer to separate the adults for a time, rather than to force a toddler to endure loneliness while Dear Husband and I get to snuggle up all night long.

The first few night were a bit disrupted. Even though it was the same room that Chubs had slept in since the night she came home from hospital, it does look different with the new furniture. The night light was too bright for me and I didn't sleep well, and she rolled around and around and around! She rolled off the mattress a few times onto the floor, and so we covered the bedside table with a fluffy doona to make it softer until the new bed arrived. It is a big change for her, and I'm happy to sleep with her to help her through it.

I certainly was MUCH MUCH MUCH more comfortable on the floor with my own mattress all to myself, rather than in the big bed with her capital-H-ing us in the back. As much as I miss Dear Husband at night, we are all getting a lot more sleep and Dear Husband and I are much more comfortable.

ORCOB Part 2
ORCOB Part 3


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