Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Toddler Bed Transition Part 1

     When Abby turned one back in June, she figured out how to crawl out of her crib. Once Grant and I were able to pick up our jaws from the floor, we lowered her crib to the lowest setting possible, and prayed that she wouldn't figure out how to climb out of it for a really long time to come. That long time lasted only 7 months. oh boy!

     Last month Abby figured it out. I had put her in her crib for a time out (side note: YES a time out! Judge all you want, but I did the one minute time out with her several times and it really helped her to stop doing the things that sent here there), and when I went back after the one minute time period to talk to her, she was having a blast running about her room! I was so shocked and baffled that I just laughed and not much time-out discussion took place after that. I think part of that laugh was fearful since I knew that we were in serious trouble at that point. The lowest setting, and she can still crawl out?!

     For several days we just hoped and prayed and I tried not to pull my hair out from anxiety that she wouldn't climb out of her crib and fall at a bad angle and hurt herself (of course as a mother I immediately think of worst case scenario, broken neck). Then she began to wake up earlier and earlier each day, and instead of turning over to fall asleep, she crawled out of her crib and came to join us. Thankfully I randomly woke up as she greeted me at our bedroom door. And then came the midnight greeting. I didn't realize it was midnight at the time so I just picked her up and brought her to bed with us, thinking it was around 5am. It was not, and an endless night of feet kicking me and pushing me ensued. Grant and I were fighting for space on the king size bed all night. I knew that could not continue! Nope!

     That night, we decided to just put her mattress on the ground to see how that held up. After two days, she figured out how to climb out of that. From the mattress on the ground! She's insanely smart! I hooked her monitor back up, laid some blankets and pillows on the ground, and closed the door in case she got out, and put her in her pack n play thinking she might have a harder time since there weren't any slats to help her momentum. That didn't work either. She still woke up at 3am-ish every night crying and screaming.

     So, with much trepidation, we turned to our last resort. The toddler bed. Not only was I not ready for Abigail to be in a toddler bed (besides the whole, she's growing up, and it's too much to handle aspect), I wasn't sure if she was ready (obviously her crawling out of the crib was one sign that she was ready). I mean, she still just does her baby babbling sounds, and while they're increasing tremendously recently, she still doesn't really say any real words yet. She's starting to understand more and more of what we are saying and taking direction from us, which is a great sign. But I can't really explain to an 18 month old that she needs to stay in her bed all night long, yes I know that you can now freely get out without any difficulty or pull-ups involved, but still view it as a crib, and pretend you're locked in tight, and stay there all night. Also, potty train yourself while you're at it! I just felt it was such a difficult thing to expect her to understand at this stage.

     But with no real safe options left, and my blood pressure rising each evening as I stared at the monitor all night long, I knew we had to do it...

     Our toddler bed transition experience to follow.

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