Have you ever encountered a problem that you tried to solve but could not, and then one day, you realize that it had worked itself into a solution?
Well, I think that just happened to us…
When Ethan was born, I made up my mind to implement co-sleeping. Well, actually initially he slept in his crib, but the frequent middle-of-the-night feeds for a new mommy who was exclusively breastfeeding her firstborn was getting too tiring for me. So thankfully, I managed to master the art of breastfeeding him while sleeping/lying down. Besides I didn’t want to put him in another room then, and have to run into his room to sleep with him at night. That would defeat the purpose altogether, wouldn’t it?
So eventually Ethan moved into our bed and we were all happy.
However, as he grew bigger, his rotational sleeping behaviour was causing us our peaceful sleep. We ended up with no space at all!
When we moved to the States (at that time Ethan was about 2.5 years old), we’d planned on training him to sleep in his own room. After all, he would have a room of his own and it was a fresh environment perfect for training. Alas, that plan backfired when he refused to sleep in his room alone. In the end, all three of us crammed into the queen sized bed. Imagine, our bed in Penang is a king sized one, and now we had to all somehow fit into a queen sized bed! On top of that, at that time, my pregnant belly was also getting bigger and bigger. How on earth we managed to do it is beyond me…
Anyway, we came back to Penang with Ethan still refusing to move to his own room. We told Ethan he could use our guest room as his own room, and he agreed to move when he turned 4 years of age.
When the day came, he tried sleeping in his own room, but got up and complained that he didn’t want to. He claimed that sleeping there gave him bad dreams and he always dreamt of a snake.!
So back we all went on to the king sized bed. To make matters more squeezy, Hannah now had moved onto our bed as well. Yeah, blame it on me who did not train her when she was a newborn…anyway, the nights got really crammed, is all I can say.
Then one day, Ethan had a bout of food poisoning and threw up frequently. I took him to the doctor and gave him medication. Then I advised him to rest, but not on the bed, because he might dirty it if he threw up suddenly. So I put a single mattress on the floor in his room (the guest room) and he agreed to sleep there.
When he got better, he still requested to sleep on the single mattress in our room. And we obliged. He said sleeping on the mattress on the floor was so much more comfortable!
Well, seeing that he was SO comfy on the mattress, and realizing that half our battle might already have been won, I decided to get him a little present.
Combining his Lightning McQueen and Cars craze and his newfound love in sleeping on that mattress, I made him an offer he could hardly refuse!
So now, Ethan sleeps on his own Cars mattress in our room. He can go to sleep on his own without needing anyone to be in the room with him. And he can wake up by himself too! We have reclaimed our space on our bed, with the exception of Hannah, who is still sleeping with us. By the way, Hannah has also recently shown a keen interest on sleeping on her brother’s mattress too..so perhaps we can work something out there.
The next step is for Ethan to move into his own room. He has already indicated he is ready. It’s only a matter of time now.