I’ve decided to do this transition very slowly. It takes as long as it takes and Logan is always welcome in our bed until he’s comfortable sleeping through the night in his room. I will continue nursing him to sleep as this is his preferred (and quite frankly, only) method for dozing off.
After much deliberation on how this will work, I landed on starting with naps instead of tackling overnight right out the gate. We made the (rookie parent) mistake early on of trying to get Logan to sleep in his crib, which caused him to hate that space. Then we made an even bigger mistake of using the crib as a place to put Logan when he was in trouble (safe space where he couldn’t hurt himself), so that we could each cool off. Obviously, this does not make his bed appealing to him. Now, we’ve got to build the toddler bed up as a safe and happy place.
In order to do this, I’ve set up his room Montessori style: low shelves with a few toys and everything in this space is safe for him to interact with. My long-term goal and intent behind this is eventually, if he wakes up early in the morning, he can get out of bed and play while Mommy & Daddy get a little extra sleep. So, I’ve created this fun-filled Logan space and we’re spending tons of time in there–playing, reading, laying on his bed–really getting him used to his surroundings.
I have a bookshelf for him that is his height and a couple of canvas draws underneath with soft toys. Nothing that he could potentially choke on, climb on, or any toy that requires supervision–just use common sense and follow your gut. If for any reason any toy you’ve left behind in your child’s space gives you that unsure feeling, take it out. It’s always better safe than sorry. I’ve also taken our foam floor blocks and lined the carpet with them. It adds color and makes it more his space. In addition, if he were to fall of his toddler bed–I’m sure it happens more often that one might think–it’s super padded in that area. And, of course, the area is finished with a baby gate enclosing it, so that Logan can’t wander out of that space and get into anything that he shouldn’t be messing with.
Since beginning this journey, we’ve had three very successful days, but I know that doesn’t mean everyday from here on out will be perfect. He’ll get sick and need extra cuddles. He’ll have a growth spurt and want to nurse extra. I understand that the transition to his big boy bed doesn’t mean he’ll never return to ours, it just means that he won’t be there every night.
I’m just taking it day-by-day, building up his confidence in sleeping on his own, and comforting/snuggling him the moment he wakes up. We’re getting there–everyday my little man grows-up a little bit more and there is no need to rush.
Someday, my husband and I will get to sleep in our bed just as a married couple again, but I’m sure on that day, I’ll miss the presence of having our tiny human at my breast and by my side.