Friday, December 16, 2011

Bed Transition: WE aren't ready

I remember distinctly fearing what would happen when Seren moved out of her crib and into her big girl bed. I read blogs. I read about locks being locked. Crying. Toys being thrown. Horrible  nights of night waking. We postponed it. But then we had a second one on the way. And we wanted her to have her bed for fear she'd feel "replaced" when we stuck the wee one in her crib. So at 27 ish months we moved her into her bed.

We said goodnight.

And that was that.

No word from her until morning.

If I blogged about it, I'm sure I didn't say much. Less the sleeping gods strike me down and make me eat my words.

Done. In one night. No transition.

Fast forward. Wyeth is now three. He sleeps in his crib every night. But he doesn't like it. Particularly painful for him was the nights he had to sleep in a pack and play over our Thanksgiving break. He was NOT a fan. And why should he be? He barely fit.

Nightly we would hear, "I don't like this poopy bed. This is too small. This poopy bed is way too small."

We all were relieved when he was back in his "big" crib.

Every night for about 18 months, Wyeth takes a long time to 'unwind'. He sings. He talks. He plays. He cries out for me to get him a drink of water, a book and/or a wooden hammer (Don't ask). He usually needs 45 minutes to go to sleep. He passes out around 9:15 pm. Ridiculously late. I imagine when we drop the nap, he'll be out like a light.

But how in the world will he be when he has freedom? Last night he took his wooden hammer and tried to "Get out of these bars".  "I want to play. I want to get out of here. I don't like these poopy bars". Then he started to say, "It is too long! I have been in here sleeping for way too long!"

Really, buddy, you have been SLEEPING too long?

When we finally get up the nerve to put him in a bed, what strategies do you have? Seren slept there until the next morning. She STILL calls us in.

Wyeth, I imagine, will be playing with his trucks. Reading books. Rooting around in his closet. Maybe we do both- drop the nap and transition to the bed at the same time. What about that?

Either way, I predict chaos.

I've been wrong before. So lets hope I'm wrong. But OY.


Beth said...

Hi Megan. I meant to comment on this when you first posted. Have you switched him yet? In my experience, the anticipation is ALWAYS worse than the actual event. Hope it's the same for you. Seth stays awake in his bed for a long time after the lights go out, but the funny thing is he NEVER gets out of bed unless I tell him to. Or if he has to use the bathroom he will, but he gets right back into bed. It's pretty funny. If he wakes up in the wee hours of the morning, though, he'll come get into bed with us. And I don't really mind that. (Unless, of course, William is already in bed with us, in which case it's a bit trickier!) Good luck!

Whitney said...

Here are my thoughts:
1. get him involved in picking out his new bed. Get him excited! This can be finding one on craigslist and picking it up, or maybe going to Ikea.
2. Talk a lot about how to get "IN" to the bed, and what to do if he needs something when he is "IN" the bed (call you on the monitor, etc.)
3. Hold your breath and hope for the best! You may not even have a prob!!

Then, if he starts getting out, you could do a sticker chart (3 nights in his bed all night ==prize (special time with you, getting ice cream cone, etc., then 5 nights, etc.). Or, I read about an approach that was actually studied in treatment control and totally worked. First, make some cards that he can use at night (maybe like 3 or so) when he needs a hug from your or dad. Make it clear that he can only use the amount he has. The idea is that he will eventually start "saving" the cards, instead of calling you, because he knows he only has so many. But, in doing so, he teaches himself to go back to sleep without help. In your case, it would be without getting out of bed...
Good luck!

PC said...

Maybe he will be so happy to have a new bed he won't get out. I know that sounds too simple...but Cameron has never tried to get out since we switched him 5 months ago. I was terrified too, and he also takes SO long to fall asleep, but now he just lays in his new bed with a few toys and quietly hangs out until he is out. Let me know how it goes!

PC said...

'out' as in fast asleep :)