It’s almost 10 p.m. and I’m still up (Baja Blast at 9:00 p.m. was not a good idea).
Tonight, I have co-sleeping on my mind.
When I had my son my anxiety was overwhelming (it still is but I’ve learned how to cope a little). That’s one thing no one tells you before you become a parent – how much you worry.
My son had a tiny choking incident in the hospital, which I am pretty sure is pretty common by the way the nursing staff reacted but it made my anxiety go through the roof. His first few months at home he had terrible reflux and would spit up like the exorcist randomly.
At first I made my decision because I was literally at my breaking point I was so exhausted and I didn’t have much help during the nights. I was secretly crying alone in the bathroom whenever I got a break and got a second alone. This momma needed sleep. I had been sleeping in the recliner with him on my chest for the first two months barricaded in by pillows. When he hit 12 pounds I decided I had to find a way to get him to sleep on his own without the fear of choking in the middle of the night. We tried to do three hour shifts which was miserable and my husband doesn’t do well without a solid 8 hours of sleep. We were exhausted and we were fighting all the time.
After a lot of research, I decided that it was time to move him into our bed. I could hear him and feel him breathing so I could react quickly if anything happened. My husband had lost his job two months before the baby was born and my maternity leave wasn’t paid so purchasing a $300 breathing monitor wasn’t an option.
I research and researched and research. I was certain I was going to make the wrong decision and everyone’s opinions didn’t help.
- It’s a fairly common practice around the world
- To me it seems pretty natural to comfort my tiny human who can’t walk, talk or react on his own in the middle of the night – developmentally, I don’t feel like he is ready to be all alone in a separate room
- The naysayers’ only reasons for not having him in our room have to do with their personal opinions and sleep patterns (you won’t get any sleep, you don’t want him in your bed, etc.)
- Practicing safe co-sleeping can actually reduce the chance of SIDS
As I lay here, next to Bradley in his cookie monster jammies I don’t regret my decision to bring him into our bed. Not for one second. I’ve gotten a lot of flack for it from friends and family (it will be harder to break the habit down the road, your doing him a disservice, etc).
The first night he slept in our bed – I slept too. I was a new person. I woke up in the morning ready to be the mom I wanted to be (not a zombie with a grudge).
I plan to transition him when he can call for me from the other room (if he’s ready).
He will only be little once and I’m not upset about the mid-night snuggles, tiny hand holding mine or the smell of baby on my sheets.
Let me know if anyone needs a brand new crib or baby monitor– because we aren’t using ours anytime soon…
If you are interested in co-sleeping/bed sharing here are a few resources:
- Sweet Sleep
- Happiest Baby on the Block