Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Sleep.....? When cots become cot beds......

Just when you think you've got it all sorted; the girls are playing nicely together in the garden, you're actually getting some laundry sorted and ironed, and they're both sleeping through from 7.30pm until approx 6am; that's when it all goes awry again.

We have reached the point where our younger is nearly 2 years old and she can reach the top of her cot with her foot.  From 2 years of watching her older sister, she has a 'climbing' habit.  And it's purely a matter of time before she utilises her skills to throw herself out of her cot.  So we had to do it.  We had to convert the cot into a cot bed.  This weekend.

The first night was fine.  She was exhausted from a very busy day.  She went to bed late due to all the excitement surrounding the change to a new 'bed'.  So she was asleep before she could really worry about the change. 

The second night was fine.  Hubby sat with her for a bit after lullabies, and she fell to sleep whilst he was still there.  "We need to be careful we don't let that happen too often" he commented that night.  "Else she'll always want us to sit with her until she gets to sleep". 

He was right.

Today the problems started at nap time.  Usually she is brilliant at nap time.  She'll even switch into her pyjama bottoms for comfort, and snuggle up in her cot happily.  I'll say 'night night' and she'll wave me out of the room and indulge in between 1 and 2 hours kip.  Today she was absolutely not happy.  Every time I tucked her in and left the room she'd scream, run to the safety gate at her door, and stand screaming for me.

The screaming quickly reduced to whining, but 40 mins later, after so many 'tuckings-in' I lost count, when she was still getting up the second I left, I gave up and took them both out in the car for a drive.  I haven't done that in a while!  My elder was tired out too, the double buggy had been left in the boot of the hubby's car (scatty did you say?), so only my car could accommodate them both for a nap simultaneously. 

It completely messed up the afternoon's plan.  Instead of "quiet time with eldest whilst youngest naps, walk across to local supermarket for nappies, post letters, hand in forms to leisure centre, walk back via park, tea, bath bed".  It become "stressful time having to keep leaving my elder to sort the younger, stressful 30 mins trying to get the car seats back in my car (why they weren't in is a whole other story), weird 90 mins of driving around my local town so they'd sleep, a quick trip into the supermarket, forgot to post letters, no time to hand in forms, no time for park, no time for walk, a quick play in the garden, off to bed".

At 8.30pm tonight though, after trying to settle the younger down for 90 mins, I was seriously regretting letting her sleep in the day at all.  She was screaming as if she was scared to be left.  Very weird, considering that she's always been really good at saying goodnight and falling to sleep after we've left the room.

Hubby had the answer.  He pointed out that sleeping in a cot bed after a cot, was akin to me sleeping out in the middle of the garden after sleeping in my room.  Because, for her, the bars of the cot formed a wall around her, cocooning her. 

So how are we supposed to help her with this one then?  I guess I won't be doing much in the evenings this week!?

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