Monday, February 27, 2012

Operation Big Boy Bed

For most of his life E has been a pretty good sleeper- save for the first 7 months. Once he got the hang of it though, we all started sleeping like well.. babies. He liked his crib & never tried to climb out- until a few months ago in a rare fit of rage in the middle of the night.  I hear the pitter patter and next thing I know my pantless boy is standing in my room totally unaffected by the fact he just climbed out of his jail cell.  

Momentary panic set in for us. We thought he'd be safe & sound for at least another YEAR in his crib. I liked him being confined- let's face it- what parent doesn't? Once your child becomes mobile it's the only place that can keep them in one place. We did a little temporary fix- put the mattress on the floor with the crib surrounding. It was great for confinement, but terrible on getting him in & out.  It was only a matter of time before that set up no longer worked for us especially since Houdini was no match for the pack & play at his grandparents' houses. 

What better time to transition to a 'big boy bed' than in conjunction with a birthday?  We've been talking it up for weeks- asking if he's ready to sleep in a big bed and that babies sleep in cribs, but the timing wasn't right until yesterday. Really, the 'timing' excuse was more for our benefit. Any disruption to our nice little routine at nap & night was something M & I struggled with as we had no idea how he would react. We'd heard all the stories of kids destroying their rooms, of opening doors continuously for hours and the list goes on...  

E loves to 'help daddy' put things together- he's such a Gokey! And in our copious amounts of research on this topic, we found a common thread- have your child help you get his room ready. So, that's what we did

Voila! In addition to the 'big boy bed', we changed his room decor from baby to toddler. More on that those updates in the next post.

So, nap time came around and we did our normal book routine and I left. He didn't cry,but climbed out of bed as soon as I shut the door & proceeded to wander around his room for 45 minutes playing and checking to see if we would come back if he made noise. We didn't. I guess he finally gave up and ended up here- in the floor underneath his ottoman. Half of nap was spent there, he woke up & climbed into bed and slept for another hour. Success!

Now the question around nighttime performance was lurking. Our Ped recommended we follow our normal  routine and put a night light in his room. We opted not to put a rail on his crib because it's so low to the floor & well he has to learn boundaries sometime, right? I mean we're not going to tote a rail everywhere we go. So after books were read and lights off, M left. E did cry for a bit & unplugged the monitor (his way of getting us back in his room), but all in all, he did great. 10 minutes of angst maybe before crawling into bed with a book (my boy).  Since there was no rail, it was inevitable that he'd fall out as he's a big time roller. He did, but only once, didn't cry & went right back to sleep. 

This morning I heard him get up, turn his light on & was sitting by the door asking for a diaper change when I came in. I'm not counting this a 100% success story just yet as anyone with small tots knows- they love to keep you on your toes, but the first attempt couldn't have gone any better!

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