Monday, August 11, 2008

Musical Beds

A miracle has occurred in our house.

(No, its not that I finally posted on my blog....)

It's common knowledge to anyone who has read my blog for a short length of time that we are a close family. And by close, I mean that we are close 24 hours a day, as in no one can be alone especially at night.

It often works out well for me, that is if the children aren't in my bed. When they sleep together in their beds they usually stay out of mine. If you really don't know why I don't want them in my bed, just go read some posts from July. Or read the rules for sleeping in my bed here. Or at least look at some photos. You'll understand.

One problem is that beds don't get made. If Jenna sleeps in Julia's bed then Julia can't make her bed until Jenna gets up. Or visa versa. So it never fails that beds aren't made and it drives me crazy. (I admit that I am not the tidiest of house keepers but I have this thing for wanting made beds. Go figure.)

Another problem is when one them is away. Usually its Julia and Jenna sleeping together so if one is away or if Julia has a friend spend the night then Jenna wants to sleep with me. Again refer to practically the entire month of July and you'll understand why I will do just about anything to prevent this from happening. Emma and Ryan are already in my bed and its hard enough. I really don't need Jenna too.

When I brought Ryan home naps were an issue. He slept with me and Emma at night so I decided to try having him nap with Emma on my bed. The first few days it worked well, especially while I was still somewhat jet lagged and napping with them. But soon my napping stopped and when I left the room, the play began.

Ryan loves Emma. I mean LOVES Emma. If he is in a room and she comes into it he gets so excited to see her that he squeals with excitement. He is often trying to give her hugs. So when I left them alone he just couldn't help himself. I would stand at the door and watch him pat her cheek or rub her arm and laugh. And then she would laugh. It was absolutely precious and darling and absolutely inconducive to sleep. Something else had to be done.

So last week I decided to try something drastic. I put him in his own bed at nap time. And to my amazement, he went to sleep with little protest. But it was only at nap time.

Last week Julia's BFF from Nashville, Anna, came to visit and they slept together in Julia's new room. That left Jenna alone. Uh oh! So I thought we would try Ryan sleeping with her. This worked for him but Jenna didn't like it because he often kicked her in the middle of the night. So last night I decided to try something really drastic again. Everyone over the age of 2 had to sleep in their own bed.

This, as expected, didn't go over very well. The loudest source of compliant came from the oldest child, and that wouldn't include Trace and Ross. But I cold heartedly ignored the tears and insisted that we were going to give this a try. I did tell the girls that if they woke up in the night and were scared they could sleep with their sibling. Ryan actually went to bed alone in his bed without a second thought.

To be honest, I wasn't sure what I would find this morning when I woke up but to my amazement--

Julia was asleep in her own bed.

Jenna was asleep in her own bed.

And Ryan was asleep on his bed. {Note to self: dig out the rail/net to put on the side of his bed.}

I was giddy with excitement but it was somewhat dampened by the fact that my bed was still not empty. Emma was still there.

She has been sleeping alone on my bed at nap time but last week she FINALLY learned to roll from her back to her tummy and one day she rolled over and crawled off the bed. Not a good thing because my bed is pretty tall. But it occurred to me that she wasn't afraid to be alone, perhaps it was the being enclosed in her bed that scared her. (She screams when I put her in her bed)

So today we took off the side rail to her baby bed and put the toddler rail on. I decided to give it a try at nap time.

Emma in her bed with the rail.

Emma getting all comfy with the bottle that she refuses to give up. But that's a battle for another day. Today we were focusing on sleeping in her own bed.

And it worked. She napped in her bed and there was no screaming. It was kind of awkward how she finally got to sleep but she DID sleep in her bed so I'm counting it as a win.

By now I was a little drunk with the possibility of sleeping alone and I decided to really push the envelope. Emma was going to go to sleep tonight her own bed.

I could go into the details but lets just say I'm typing this in my bed and there's a baby asleep beside me.

Oh well, Rome wasn't built in a day.


Heather Thompson said...

I have similar issues with my little ones and love seeing someone have success! Good luck with these new sleeping arrangments, I think you've inspired me!
Heather (FL)
CCAIWCP fellow mommy

Kristin said...

Oh my, I SO get the sleep issues! We've been battling that with Anna Grace for 4 years. We've been through co-sleeping, sleeping on our floor, sleeping with her sisters, and anything else you can think of. We finally broke the habit a few months ago with the promise from daddy of a penny each night she stayed in her own bed. Fast forward to this month. Daddy is gone, kindergarten started, and she's back in my bed. Yeah for me. We've got work to do!!