Tuesday, April 23, 2013

From big boy bed, back to cot


A few weeks ago I wrote HERE about transitioning Ezra from his cot, to the big bed. The whole process, if you remember, was very stressful, strenuous and challenging. He just doesn't get how to stay in bed. The moment you leave the room he gets up, but if you are in the room, he thinks it is play time. If I try to lay down next to him, I would get punched or my hair pulled. It drove me crazy and it it made me so angry. The whole ordeal was a nightmare and it wore us all out.

We struggled through three weeks of battles for nap time, often lasting over 2 hours only to achieve a 40 minute nap, and although night time was better, it was still challenging. He would fall asleep fairly quickly, but we needed to be in the room. But then he became a night wanderer. One night I found him down the bottom of the stairs at 2am. He would wander into our room at any time of the night and we would wake to find him silently peering through the open door, our joke was that he was 'Children of the corning us'. He then only want to go back to sleep if one of us was laying next to him, but he was so anxious that we were going to leave that he wouldn't actually fall into a deep sleep. Meaning nobody really slept.

Needless to say we were all exhausted. A little boy who was barely sleeping, a pregnant Mumma who was already up multiple times a night to pee was now getting a horrible nights sleep, and a hard working Dad was feeling like a zombie in the morning. I felt anxious about bed time, and hated the battles for nap time, it was always so emotional for me.


So this weekend we made a big decision. To go back to the cot. We got it out of storage, and reassembled it. We decided or rather came to the realisation, that he just wasn't ready. He didn't understand, and he just couldn't figure out that he needed to stay in bed, even though he could get out if he wanted. The night wandering was dangerous, and could be quite scary, I did not want an accident on the stairs. It doesn't feel like a parenting failure, or like he is taking a step back. It was just something we tried, hoping it would be easier on us all in the long run, and then made another decision based on the needs of our child.

I had big ideas of what I wanted to happen, and for him to adjust before the new baby arrives. But, once again in my journey as a parent I found that my bright ideas as practical as they may seem, don't necessary always meet the needs of my child at his stage in life.

The day he came back to his room to see his cot set up for his nap he had a huge smile on his face, he didn't even want a bedtime story he just wanted to get in right away. I sat with him for a few moments, kissed him,  didn't hear a peep for the next couple of hours. He was comfortable and felt secure. He is the type of child that NEVER sits still, he wont lay still enough to sleep unless he has no other choice.

I'm so glad now that we made the decision to go back.
I didn't want my last weeks that I can focus purely on him to be ones filled with stress and fighting against each other at nap time. I want to cherish this time, I want to make sure he knows how loved he is before the arrival of his baby sister. I want to enjoy these weeks, and I don't want to feel stressed, anxious or sleepless, that isn't good for any of us.


We will try again later, when he is older, when he understands more and is ready.

Because it is Tuesday, I'm linking up with Jess for #IBOT

Karen xx 

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30 comments:

  1. Sounds like you guys made the right decision. And good for you for your ability to be a flexible mum! Kids are not an extension of their parents; they are their own person with their own personality. They do what THEY want, not necessarily what YOU want! As much as I knew that to be true before having kids, it was a hard reality to grasp!


    I'm glad that at this point, Ez is happy and comforted to be back in his cot, as I'm sure you guys are too. He'll let you know when the time is right to make the move! Keep up the good work Karen!

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  2. It took us a while to get missy into a cot - in the end we took the cot side down and pushed it up against the bed (that had the child safety rail on it - so she had to climb over it to get into the bed to get out.. which she didnt do as often as I thought.. then we moved the cot to the side of the room and put her in the bed.. and then took the cot away.. took about a month.

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  3. Sounds like the right decision. My other 3 boys were in cots until they turned 3. I only move #4 because his bedroom had to be cleaned out in prep for demolition. Luckily he is ok and doesn't wander. That must have been really worrying and you really dont need that. He must have been so relieved to see his cot, that is so cute and reassuring for you. He is so cute! #teamIBOT ;)

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  4. Good on you for trying! I am three days overdue with bubs#2 and moving my son to a 'big boy bed' was not on my agenda. I could not deal with the stress of teaching him how to stay in bed, this mama needs her sleep. Best of luck with your new addition.

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  5. Oh bless him - sounds like he LOVES his cot. My Mr six didn't sleep in a big boy bed until just before he turned 3, where as my Miss 4 has been in her bed since before she was 2!! It really does just depend on the child and you just have to go with what feels right for both you and them! I think I would have done the same thing - anything for a decent nights sleep, lol. xxx

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  6. Good on you for giving it a go and more so good on you for not being afraid to go back to what was working. You are right when you said it was not a parenting fail. It wasn't. Fairy wishes and butterfly kisses lovely

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  7. It's funny how as parents we have certain ideas about things but our kids have absolutely opposite ones.

    We've decided to leave Punky in the cot for the time being. I'm honestly not sure if she is ready but I think it's easier to just leave things the way she knows them so when PJ#2 comes along she has the sameness of what she's always known to help combat the massive change of becoming a big sister.

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  8. IMHO you have totally made the right choice! My youngest, of 3, climbed out of his cot at 13 months and has been in a big boy bed since then - ARGHHH - and it's been nothing but a pain in the ass. You and him will know when it's time! Sweet dreams! Emily @ Have a laugh on me x

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  9. Well done! So proud of you - this is what parenting is all about - knowing your children and trusting your gut - there is no other way - Hope you enjoy some good sleep before bubba is born xx

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  10. We did the same thing! Tired to put our miss in a bed, but she just didn't seem to want to. The cot is her happy place, and in the end we figured why bother? She is turning 3 soon, but seems to have no great desire to be out of her cot yet, we might try again in a little while... but if they're safe and they're happy, who cares? :)

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  11. Great Karen and your maternity style is great! Hope all is well

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  12. It takes a strong person to go back and admit it publicly. Although of course it is not a failure at all, but you being a great, mother. We went back to the cot with our boy for a while. It was the only way anyone could sleep.

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  13. BJ8 didn't go into a bed until he was 4. He wasn't ready and that was cool by me. There isn't a set age they're ready, when they are they are :)
    Good on you for not forcing him into something he wasn't ready for :)
    MC x

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  14. I have found every stage has its challenges, but every stage also has really, really great bits about it too!! xx

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  15. Oh we are getting a great nights sleep!! As a bonus I don't wake up to a little face pushed right up to my face! i

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  16. Wouldn't it be lovely if they just did whatever we wanted them to!! ha I'm sure it becomes even more blantantly clear as they get older! Thanks Janelle x

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  17. I think next time we will transition by taking the one side off instead of going straight to the bed! A bit more reassuring because thats what he is familiar with!

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  18. I am all for waiting until he turns 3!! It means over a year of good sleeps (I mean apart from baby #2) and no fear of the night stalker!

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  19. Thanks Kate! I know how it feels to be overdue, I hope the little one doesn't make you wait too much longer!! x Karen

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  20. My thoughts exactly, I am starting to feel slightly human again after almost a week of good sleeps!!

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  21. He does love it!! I guess you never know until you try it, and he made it blantantly clear that he wasn't ready! x

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  22. Thanks Rhianna!! I definitely don't feel like I failed, or like he won, with the amount of sleep I'm getting I'm definitely the winner in this situation!!

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  23. Good decision!! One less thing to worry about. I'm so glad I don't have to deal with the bedtime drama anymore, just focus on trying to get ready for #2

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  24. He can climb out of his cot, and has been able to for a long time, but I combat it with the sleeping bag!! What an awesome invention!! x Karen

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  25. Thanks Josefa! I got a good 8 hours last night, I'm feeling kind of normal again!! yay!

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  26. It makes sense if they sleep well and they are happy!! I agree who cares!!! x Karne

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  27. Thanks Megan, missing you and Liljana!! xx

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  28. Thanks Jess!! The whole day/week can be wrecked due to lack of sleep for everyone, so we are all much happier now!!

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  29. Ahh I can just imagine 2 more years of cot bliss!! That sounds good to me right about now!

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  30. oh man, I can't believe you wanted to put him in a bed! I was praying Violet would stay in a cot forever and ever (sort of not really). We only made the leap because she started climbing out of the cot. Thankfully we had one had converts to a toddler bed, I really hadn't thought about the freak out that might come from a different and strange bed. Violet didn't get it at first either and she was pretty adamant that she was a) not going to take a nap and b) come into our bedroom whenever she wanted during the night. If we'd had the choice i'd have put her back in the cot. As it was I ended up trying a Supernanny technique (the stay in bed one) when I was at wits end and didn't know what else to do. I felt like an a-hole for 2 days but she stays in bed all night and all nap time now..

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