Musings from a Mom of an Almost One-Year-Old (Part II)

>> Tuesday, May 25, 2010

This is part II of a mini-series I'm writing, on the subject going from being the Attachment Parenting mother of a baby to the Attachment Parenting mother of a toddler.

You can find Part I here.

Part II: Co-Sleeping

When my Sweet Baboo was first born, we said we'd never bedshare. We planned on keeping him in our room in a separate bed until he was sleeping through the night or waking only once, then moving him to his own room. Well, he's almost a year old and he's still waking several times a night to nurse, so we are having to re-evaluate that plan.

At first things were fine. He went to sleep in his bassinet beside our bed, I brought him into bed with me for feedings, and then back to his bassinet when the feedings were over. Eventually, though, he outgrew his bassinet. We didn't think switching him to his pack n play would be an issue, but we were wrong. That thing is uncomfortable, and he didn't want to sleep there. We couldn't blame him. He just couldn't get comfortable. So he started sleeping in bed with us. That was fine when he was younger and would sleep swaddled. But as he got older and bigger, he started rolling around a lot and needing a lot more space. It got pretty crowded fast, and my husband wound up moving to the futon in the living room half the time. Now its to the point where he doesn't even bother coming to bed with us and just starts the night out in the living room. He's lonely out there by himself, and I didn't think that was fair. But then, I also thought, if my husband who is an adult is lonely by himself all night, then how can I require my baby to spend the night by himself?

So we bought a crib that you could take one side off, and pushed it up against our bed. The plan was that Baboo would sleep in his crib, and we'd have our bed back, but we'd still all be together.

That worked for awhile. Until Baboo decided the crib wasn't big enough for him. Sometimes in the middle of the night we'd hear him rolling around, tossing and turning because he couldn't get comfortable. He'd then inevitably roll into bed with us. Sometimes we could put him back into his crib and he'd sleep, but sometimes he'd keep scootching back towards me for a cuddle.

And The Hubbs would end up back in the living room. Did I mention that our futon is NOT comfortable? We have had it for less than a year, and its already broken.

We don't know what to do about this situation. We feel stuck between a rock and a hard place. Baboo can sleep all by himself in the bed, but he rolls around a lot and won't stay contained to our homemade co-sleeper. My husband and I want to be in the same bed again--being separate is not good. Not to mention the fact that sleeping on a very uncomfortable futon isn't fair to him.

Options we've thought of:
1-Buying a King sized bed for us to all sleep together. It would be pricey, and it would mean me forgoing the new photography equipment I've had my eye on, but I guess family comes before my hobby. The Hubbs thinks that this would just prolong us all sleeping together, though, and he really would like to have Baboo sleeping independently by the age of two. At that point, we'd be fine with him coming into our bed in the middle of the night if he felt like it, but we'd like him to at least start off in his own room.
2-Transitioning Baboo to his own room. We'd start slowly with the crib mattress on the floor beside our bed. Once he was used to that, we'd eventually move it across the room, then into his room where we'd fall asleep beside him, and then eventually he'd get used to sleeping in his room alone. His room is very cluttered right now and we'd have to really babyproof it for that to work. Eventually we'd like him to have a Montessori room, complete with floor bed, like this one.
3-We replace the futon with a proper sofa (again, expensive, again, no photography equipment for me until next year) and the Hubbs and I sleep in the living room. We give Baboo our bed in our room, and that way he has all the room he needs (we picture him rolling off the crib mattress if we did the floor bed, though we'd put blankets down so he wouldn't hurt himself). It has the added bonus of us being able to move all of his toys and crap into his bedroom, which we'd then use as a playroom. I could lay with him while he falls asleep, then go out to the living room with the Hubbs for the rest of the night.

What do you think? All of these options require a pretty big investment of either time or money, and any or all of them might fail. This AP thing is hard. Sometimes I wish we'd just made him sleep alone from the get-go so we wouldn't have this problem.

Any advice, thoughts, questions or comments would be appreciated.

Part III of Musings from a Mom of an Almost One-Year-Old coming soon. . .



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