I’m pretty confident I read a million and one baby books (while I was working at Mothercare and the day was slow – don’t hate, retail is a bore) and every. single. one. told me that Edith would/should/could be sleeping through the night by now. Yet for all the shoulda, woulda, couldas in the world, that little girl is still resisting and waking up at least once a night for a decent feed. The fact that her diet is appalling and the only things she eats with enthusiasm is chocolate, mash potatoes and plain pasta (in that order) probably doesn’t help but I am shattered.
Like stick a fork in me, I’m done, kind of shattered.
The last few months have seen a few changes in our “toddler sleeping routine” – Edith has gone from demanding a feed in the middle of the night by shouting from her cot, to figuring out (courtesy of her biggest brother – cheers Roo) that she can actually climb OUT of the cot and come get “boob” (her affectionate name for me) as and when she pleases. To add insult to injury, the clever little madam decided that if she could get out of her bed and come through to me for a feed, she could also refuse to go back to her own bed and there wasn’t a thing I could do about it… in fact, she could refuse to ever go to bed. Que a very unpleasant evening struggling to eat (another) take away and “chill out” while her ladyship made her way down the stairs 6 times to stealth steal the prawn crackers and join in watching Notting Hill, which was only finished by me sleeping on a snuggle sac in her bedroom on the floor. My days of being able to sleep anywhere and everywhere have passed my friends and solid floors are no longer kind to my body at 2am.
But what to do?
The way I look at it, Edith can’t be left to climb out of her bed, it’s so dangerous, what if she falls and lands at a funny angle or hits her head hard enough to cause damage and more than just tears? That very thought alone was enough to keep me awake at night, and though she never hurt herself once, I couldn’t take the chance. The problem with changing her cot to a bed is that it did absolutely nothing to stop her getting out of bed or waking up in the night… but what choices did I have?
So, changing her bed it is.
We changed her bed over last week and we’ve done our best to make it a really special experience for her, all her teddies are set up on her bed, with new bedding, a pillow and a brand new mattress. I’ve written about the importance of getting the right mattress and (since I’ve been spending 1-2 hours every night with my arse hanging off the edge of her new Emma mattress), I can confidently say that it is super comfy. We chose Emma mattress for it’s soft top layer, but predominantly it’s supportive pocket springs. I’m not one to buy a new bed for the kids on a frequently basis, I believe in buying a product for longevity which means making an investment the first time and not having to run into issues in the long term.
Since plopping Edith into her new bed, we have found that she has been up for a good hour, refusing to go back to sleep after her feed and as the whole scenario has kicked off the week that Toby has started “big boy school” I haven’t felt happy to leave her in her room to sort herself out after a snuggle or two. I know that she doesn’t need the mid-night breastfeed, and yet here we are. One thing we have done to try and make life a bit safer for her is put the stair gate on her bedroom door. That way, though she can open her bedroom door (crafty minx) she can’t actually get out and fall down the stairs or make her way into the boys room where she would no doubt clamber into the top bunk.
It’s a tough one isn’t it? I’m tired, she’s tired… we’re all so bloody tired! Only time is going to help Edith get out of this routine and to be honest, the baby books are in the bin along with empty coffee tubs and my sanity.