How does a ten pound baby take up an entire double bed?
As I write this, I'm precariously perched on the edge of my bed, while my precious little baby (only 22 inches long!) lays sideways in the middle of the bed... napping. And there's no good way to move her. Every scenario I can think of (transferring her gently, moving her with a blanket underneath, etc.) always ends up in a disastrous hour long burst of crying and snotty noses and tears and wailing and kicking and...
Well, it's just not worth it, my friends. So the Tater Tot is completely zonked out - sleeping on MY good pillow! - unmovable, un-TOUCHable, and frankly I resent her laziness. It's five o'clock, for Pete's sake! It's time for Mama Spud to be making dinner (or, at least, be watching Spudly make dinner...) and I have things to do! But no, my little Tot, I have to watch you while you're sleeping in my dangerous double bed of death, because every good book says not to let you sleep around all those pillows, blankets, and soft matteresses.
What can I do? Tell her not to fall asleep after an exhausting day of finding her hand and making poopies? Should I try to move her and make the long, bouncy, jarring walk down the hall to her own crib where she's sure to wake up and then be cranky because she's sleepy but doesn't want to sleep??
And, I'm going to break down and admit something that most people are afraid to admit. We're co-sleepers. Yes, I have the potatoes to admit it. We're co-sleepers. The family bed, sleep-sharing, whatever you may call it, when we're tired of going back and forth to her crib at night, we plop her down between us in bed and cling to the edges for dear life all so we can get a solid 5 hours of sleep.
I don't know how she has this control over us. She's not every a foot wide, but somehow I manage to fall off the bed every night and Spud wakes up with a crick in his neck every morning because he's contorted himself into some cheerleader-alphabet postion so he won't roll over her in the night. I may be making more of a deal out of this than it really is (I mean, come on, my shoulder will pop back in place.... eventually) but you may be wondering why we even bother.
"She needs to learn how to stay in her crib at night." "Let her cry for 5 minutes the first night, then ten, and by the end of the week she'll sleep by herself." "She'll own you if you let her sleep with you." I heard it all. And even believed some of it at first. And felt horrible guilt when I started co-sleeping in the hospital and the nurses thought I'd kill her in my sleep. To be honest, you know what you're doing when she's with you. She knows how to cry and move her head and if she DIDN'T, then she'd either have SIDS with you or in her crib, alone, where it could be hours before anyone found her.
We bother to do this, because we love to cuddle with her. She's a tiny little ball of fury, sometimes, but other times she becomes a little lovebug that I just can't let go of. And sometimes she starts off the night in her own crib. Then she comes into ours when she needs fed and we both fall asleep to the light of a Tinkerbell nightlight so aptly placed in our grown-up bedroom. Then, after the second feeding, she may go back to her own crib again until I'm done with my shower. To be more accurate, I'd call us "50% co-sleepers."
What is the fraction for 1/3 of my bed, 50% of the time?
Whatever it is, it's love.