Good morning everyone! Today I wanted to write about co-sleeping, aka how I survived baby Lucy.
Before having kids, I was one of those people who insisted my baby would sleep in a crib in her own room. The funny part is, nobody corrected me or suggested it may not go that way. My mom and I went shopping and bought a lovely crib and dresser set. I set up my nursery, it was perfect.
Can you guess how many times that crib has been slept in? Zero. Yep, never. Lucy will be three in July and Odette is 7 months, and the most action that crib has seen is keeping a baby contained so I could shower.
So what changed? How did I go from a person who was sure my baby would sleep in her crib to a person who slept with my baby in the spare room every night for well over a year? There’s two main explanations; anxiety and exhaustion.
I had a surprising amount of anxiety with both of my babies as newborns. I’m that person who is constantly making sure they are still breathing. I never would have slept if I couldn’t hear them or feel them breathing next to me. So having them right next to me alleviated a lot of that. I felt more at ease and therefore we all slept better. H
Exhaustion was really the biggest factor. Lucy ate around the clock every 2 hours for more than a year. She like to take her time as well, which meant night feedings felt like forever. I can’t imagine what it would have been like if I had to physically get up out of bed to nurse her every two hours. At least having her in bed with me meant I had less work and a better chance of falling asleep easily.
Odette is a much better sleeper. She will wake to nurse and be back to bed very quickly. She doesn’t require as much snuggle as Lucy did and actually pulls away from me in the night. But I still enjoy co-sleeping with her for as long as she will let me. I love hearing her breathe and I know all to well how fast time passes and they grow up.
Co-sleeping is of course a very contentious topic. Doctors suggest in no uncertain terms that babies should sleep in a crib flat on their back. Many articles make it seem like you’re child is sure to die if you don’t follow the strict sleep rules laid out these days. What this leads to in my mind is exhausted parents…which in turn leads to things like falling asleep while nursing your baby, in a way that’s maybe not safe. In my mind, if you plan to co-sleep you’ve at least come up with a safe way to do it. If you don’t end up co-sleeping that’s cool, but you’ll at least be prepared if it goes that way.
My set up currently is a crib side-car on our bed. Now honestly it’s rare that Odette actually ends up on the crib mattress, but it prevents the chance of her falling out of bed, and just gives us all a bit more space. It works well for us and I’ll take all of the snuggles I can get.
Do your research and decide what is the best set up for you, but know that if you do choose to co-sleep, you’re not alone.