I’m not sure if its only at our doctors or if all hospitals do this, but I cringe at answering those little questionnaire forms. You know the ones they give you for the first year after having your baby? Well the receptionist hands it to me every time we check in for her well baby appointments. There’s this one question I wish they didn’t ask. It’s the “does your child sleep in his/her crib?” I always mark the yes bubble. Yes, I lied. Every time they gave me that paper, I asked myself why do they make me lie to them. No my baby didn’t sleep in her crib, yes she still sleeps with my husband and I. I know there has been a study about how co sleeping is dangerous. I just wish they wouldn’t make me feel like an irresponsible parent because I felt like the best thing for our baby is to sleep with us.
For the record we really wanted to have her in her crib. My excuse for that is, she was so tiny when we first brought her home. She had low blood sugar because she wasn’t eating. It was the middle of September, so it was hot and we used a fan to help cool the room. I was afraid that I wouldn’t hear her if she was crying with the fan on. Plus we were so exhausted I thought we’d fall into a deep sleep and wouldn’t notice if something were wrong or to even be aware of it. If that makes sense.
I was freaked about SIDS, like any new mother, so I didn’t want her to be too far from me. With SIDS on my mind, her not eating, and me knocking out, I was a nervous wreck. I was looking over at the pack n play every minute. It was miserable. So we decided that she needed to be in bed with us so we could get some sleep. For about a month, she slept on my chest. I was a little concerned about her rolling off of me but we placed pillows all around me like if I were still at the hospital. I finally was able to sleep without freaking out. Once she was eating normally and her cry was stronger and more distinct, we felt more comfortable with her sleeping in the middle of us. Again, we made sure she had a barrier to keep her safe. Our plan was to have her sleep with us for a bit and when she started sleeping through the night, that’s when we would put her in her crib. And now, here we are 21 months later and she’s still in our bed. Boo.
I tried using the advice other mothers gave me about getting her to sleep in her crib. I tried letting her cry it out. We tried putting her on a schedule, which worked for getting her to sleep at a decent time but not to get her in the crib. I would nurse her before bed. That didn’t work. I would even try to have her sleep in her crib during the day, have her in there when she would take a nap. But all that would do was piss her off, then I was screwed because then she didn’t want to go back to sleep. After that I kind of gave up on getting her in the crib. I found that when you’re exhausted you want to do anything for sleep. Even if it means enabling bad habits.
The reason why I’m bringing this up is, we might be pregnant soon with a little sister or a brother, and Emerald is probably going to get the boot. I feel bad. She does this cute but annoying thing where she needs to rub my stomach in order for her to fall asleep. And I’m going to miss that. But there isn’t enough room in our bed for two babies. We weren’t sure how we were going to do it. Should we keep Emerald in our bed since she sleeps with us already? Or should we try to get her out so the new baby can be in bed with us. So it’s easier on me when nursing? Then we could probably expect both babies crawling into bed with us at some point if we do it that way. It really comes down to what I am willing to deal with now or later. Pregnant or not, I feel like it’s time Emerald should be in her own bed.