we never, ever intended to co-sleep with gus. my dad came and put together my old crib for us in our bedroom in pittsburgh, and that was partly only because we didn’t have enough space for gus to have his own room, else he might have gotten a cute little nursery all for himself complete with all the crazy stuff people put in cute little nurseries. but the labor was so long and he was so gorgeous and i couldn’t imagine him sleeping in that nasty plastic box SO FAR AWAY FROM ME all night long that first night, and so he slept in the hospital bed with me while poor papa slept on some miserably, uncomfortable sort of pull-out-chair bed thing. the next night and the night after and the night after that, the crib was just too damn far away for me to want to get up and get him from it in the middle of the night, even though it was less than 10 feet from me. or even though i probably could have jeremy get him, being as the crib was less than 12 inches from jeremy’s side of the bed. but we were both so tired. and he was so sweet and gorgeous. and also he was terrible about waking up as soon as you put his sleeping self down. so he slept on our chests a lot. and then we just sort of forgot about putting him in his crib. and then the one time i tried to put him in there for a nap at a few weeks old he spent all of 5 minutes in there until he woke up, mad as hell. and then we used it to store things like blankets and stuffed animals, etc. we never intended for my old crib to make the move with us, but we never bought its shiny new replacement when we got here, either.
sleeping all together in a family bed has been one of the most rewarding of the unexpected experiences of parenthood so far. not just because i am supremely lazy, but also because babies are so warm and cute and snuggly! and because waking up to that sweet face every morning is such a gift and a pleasure. and because it’s easy for so many other reasons: we’re right there when he’s sick; we’re right there to remind him to pee in the potty first thing; we’re right there to check on him for the 1000th time that night to make sure that yes, he’s still breathing; we’re right there for the stuffy noses; we’re right there for the bad dreams; we’re right there for the early morning games and kisses and silliness. we’re also right there for the bed hogging and the ball kicking (well, jeremy is anyway). and we’re right there for the 0615 wakeups, when there’s no hoping that he’ll stay quietly in bed and leave us alone for a little bit. HE IS in bed. and he’s NOT quiet.
but really, for the most part, the “good” times far outweigh the “bad”. the thing is, though, he’s just getting really BIG for such a small guy. and even when there’s enough room i don’t even want to snuggle with jeremy very much anymore because PLEASE OHMYGOD CAN EVERYONE JUST GIVE MAMA A LITTLE BIT OF SPACE FOR ONCE @#&^%*$#??? also there’s this belly of mine that keeps getting slowly but surely big and big and bigger. and then they’re really won’t be room for all of us.
so after much discussion i talked jeremy into taking our mattress off the frame and storing it for awhile and pushing our twin up against it and just having one huge bed — with gus on the twin and mama and papa on the queen (i used to think queens were SO. BIG.). and so we started to take the frame apart only to remember that we’d had to wood glue two opposite corners together. foiled! so we decided to get a bed frame about the same height as ours and tie them together and have the same plan a foot off the grand.
and so we went to ikea, the land of worthless but affordable furniture, to get this simple but still kind of cute bed frame that was very inexpensive and that their website said they had in stock but it turned out then they didn’t. and they told us they’d have them in two weeks. and then two weeks later we went to PA. and then when we called when we got back they hadn’t gotten then in yet. or the week after that either. and then the week after that and since their system for checking stock availability was down. $%^&%@.
but then i found another backup bed frame for only $10 more and finally this morning i decided to take a shot that they’d at least have one of two in stock (and they had BOTH and then i agonized over which to get. lord have mercy as if it mattered!). and gus and put it together today with much excitement after we got home from class.
gus was very excited — awhile back we got him some train sheets that he very much likes (and he has insisted on using the train pillow since we got the sheets back in july) — to get his own bed all put together.
and then suddenly he realized what his sleeping on his new bed would mean: “i can’t sleep there! your nursings will not be on it!” so i explained to him that i would be right there next to him all night and when he needed nursings he just have to ask and i would come right over and say “here are the nursings”. and then i asked him if he’d like to practice and he said yes. so i tucked him into his bed and i got under the covers in the big bed and i made us both pretend to sleep. this was very hard for gus because he wanted to talk and giggle a lot, and i kept telling him to be quiet and close his eyes, which only made him giggle more. finally we both closed our eyes and quietly pretended to sleep, and then he said “i want nursings!” and i rolled over and snuggled up to him and said “here are the nursings!” and i said “see?” and he said “yes! can we nurse?” ha, smart kid.
and then tonight he talked about HIS bed when he talked about bedtime. and then he climbed right into his bed (after emphatically throwing off the afghan i had put on it) (another nice thing about him having his own bed, since he doesn’t much like covers and i most sincerely do). and then he nursed to sleep and that was that.
i guess we’ll see how things go tonight the first time he wakes. and tomorrow night. and the next and the next. because i can’t believe it could be so easy to get him into his own space.
but what a right foot to start off on!
yes, for the curious, the plan is eventually to move him into his own room. when he’s ready.