Well it happened, at almost five and half months pregnant I slept on the floor next to my toddler’s bed last night.
He’s been a light sleeper for as long as I can remember, despite our best efforts from day one to try and help him sleep in any conditions. I refused a sound machine when he was an infant because I didn’t want him reliant on it. I wouldn’t put off things like vacuuming during nap time so he could develop a tolerance for the noise. And I refused the black out shades because again, I didn’t want him reliant on specific conditions to sleep. To be honest, all of this was successful to a point. The noise didn’t really bother him but it didn’t change him waking up frequently at night.
Last night he woke up and came running to our door sometime after midnight. He said he wanted to sleep with us because it was “cozy.” My mama heart has been craving some cosleeping snuggles lately so I would have immediately scooped him up and tucked him in next to me. But the hubs was on to me and had followed me out quickly telling our son, “no.” It was clear this wasn’t up for discussion. In all fairness he’s coming down with some end of summer cold and hasn’t been feeling his best.
With the clear no from dad my son burst into tears. I asked him to come here and held him and suggested that mommy lay down in his room with him. That seemed to be a tolerable answer and he laid back down and let me tuck him in. Maybe I was feeling soft because of the pregnancy hormones? Maybe because I’ve been reflecting on how little time I have with just my boy before his sister arrives? Maybe it was because I frequently have nightmares (even as an adult) and recognize the comfort that can be found in knowing there is someone next to you? Whatever the reason I got my blanket and pillows and tucked myself in on the floor. I didn’t stay more than an hour and a half but it was enough to leave him soundly asleep and peaceful so I could creep back into my own bed.
I type this out fully acknowledging this was one of those scenarios in parenting I couldn’t understand before I had a little of my own. One of my naive beliefs that I wouldn’t participate in myself. I was even judgy hearing of other moms that did this. Weren’t they setting up unhealthy and unsustainable sleep habits? But the thing is, there isn’t a manual that comes with your newborn. We’re all figuring it out as best we can and doing the best we can. So let’s cheer one another on, laugh or encourage at the small struggles and offer support and understanding for the bigger ones. At the end of the day we all want to be the best we can for our littles and that’s enough.
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