This is a photo of Isabel getting ready to sleep on her own bed.
Both Ethan and Isabel only started sleeping on their own beds for the past 2 months. Before that, all four of us, one big happy family, had been sleeping on the same bed together.
Isabel has been co-sleeping with me, Ethan and my husband since she was one year old. Ethan has been co-sleeping with me and my husband since he was born.
As crowded as it may be on our queen-size bed, I had learned how to lay motionless for hours
so that I did not roll over them, especially when they were still babies. Every time I needed to move, I would automatically ‘wake up’ and carefully re-positioned myself. It was a crowded bed indeed but I loved co-sleeping with my kids. In fact, I sort of miss being able to hug them in the middle of the night.
Ethan started sleeping with us because I was breast-feeding him. It really made night-time breast-feeding so much easier with him right next to me as I kept falling asleep while nursing him.
Then when we had Isabel, we wanted her to have her own bed so we put her in another room. By the time she was one, I think she realized that Ethan was sleeping with us while she had to sleep alone. So she started waking up and crying every hour for a few weeks. That took a toll on me and one night, I just moved her crib to my room, removed the side panel and placed the crib next to me. From that night onwards, Isabel would hold my right hand to sleep and Ethan would hold my left hand.
Now that they are 4 and 6 years old, my husband and I decided that it is time to let them sleep on their own beds as the kids are getting so much taller and they kept rolling and kicking us. We bought the beds in January this year but I did not have the heart to get them to sleep by themselves. It took me almost 6 months before I finally convinced myself that it is time to do so.
It wasn’t a difficult transition for them. We made the room very comfortable and they decorated their beds with their favourite things. During the first 2 weeks, I had to sleep with them on their beds – waking up a few times in the middle of the night to take turns to sleep with each of them. After that, I just needed to tuck them in, kiss and hug them good night and I could go and sleep on my own bed.
Ethan falls asleep pretty quickly. It’s just Isabel who kept getting out of bed to talk to me. She would come to my room every few minutes just to tell me what happened in school, or to remind me to get her something the next day, or just to tell me that she loves me. I am sure that will pass pretty soon too and Isabel will soon fall asleep quickly just like her brother.
So when my friends asked me if I would co-sleep with my kids again if I had the chance to re-do things, my answer was yes. This precious few years had passed so quickly and will never happen again and I am truly grateful for those moments when I could hug and cuddle my kids while we all slept together lovingly.
And if you are wondering whether or not you should co-sleep with your kids, just go ahead with it.