Middle of night thoughts on co-sleeping.
January 19, 2012 by Kimberly Storms
Many know that co-sleeping is safe, for studies and resources on this fact, and for ways to safely co-sleep you can learn more here
<------ A photo from 2007 of my then 18 month old son co-sleeping in his adorable green wool soakers. (Diaper cover!)
(Above is a photo of Mr. Handsome a few months old and his joy at waking me up after a night of cuddling co-sleeping)
That aside let me dive into the reality that was my night. 2am and my 18 month old was wide awake. Normally she would be playing in our room and smiling at me from her bed. Tonight however she had a co-sleeping need that she thought was more important then her parents actually sleeping. You see at 18 months old, this little dear thought co-sleeping meant having her parents entertain her till she was ready to play with the sand man. Wonder husband tried, and failed, and as he had work it and I am a night owl by nature, it was my turn. This meant though, no blog fun would be had for our smillie baby demanded all attention. An hour goes by of cuddling and hushing and singing in whispers and still she was awake. On top of this she was hurting me.
Our little sweet heart seems to show her love by smacking us. I kid you not. So why have we not stopped her from doing this? Where did she even pick this up in a non-spanking home? We think it is a sensation and reaction that she enjoys. We have been tried to be peaceful about trying to change this but so far, we are not winning this battle. So we are stepping it up with a hard “No” and at this she falls to the floor to hit her head and have a tantrum as if someone physically hurt her. You might have guessed, NO, is not working either.
No crying though as I knew being stern would not bring sleep to any of us. I kept my patience and kept practicing calm hands with her. Another hour goes buy, things are calmer at least. Every time I think she is out I get a toddler hand in my face to remind me “not a chance mom.”
I actually layed there day dreaming about what it would be like to be parents that thought Crying it Out was an option. She would be in her room, in her bed, and I would be asleep right? Right? Reality of course crashes in remembering all the negatives to CIO, so very very many. Not to mention it is not in me to not respond to crying and I know babies have a need to not be alone. I badly though wanted to sleep. The arm my toddler was pinning was really hurting (fibromyalgia) and I felt like I could hardly take a deep breath without attracting her attention.
And so I thought about posting here about the “fun” of co-sleeping with an 18 month old. Meanwhile she was kicking me in the belly and snapping my PJ top against my shoulder.
Thinking about writing calmed me, brought me some mental piece, and before I knew it, she was asleep with a little grin on her sweet face and the night time parenting all seemed worth it. Every moment.
So I held my sleeping baby peacefully, blissfully watching her sleep and wondering why one would ever want to miss this moment by letting a baby cry it out in another room. There is a biological need that is met in me holding my sleeping baby. It all passes so quickly I was reminded there in the dark, thinking about how blessed I am. I wished then like I do so many nights to be able to keep those feelings, I wished for them not to pass so quickly, and in wishing I fell to sleep happy. A night very well spent.