Based on those conversations, I started prepping myself for a long road of making the switch. We showed her the beds like hers in the Ikea showroom (they actually didn't have a display of the model we were buying, but we showed her similar ones) and she seemed excited about it. I knew we'd have some sleep to catch up on after our sleep-deprived trip so I didn't even consider putting it up until this weekend.
So last night, the Husband put it together in our room after she went to sleep and when Lila woke up this morning, he showed it to her. She climbed right in and snuggled there for a few minutes. Then the Husband moved it into the living room so she could play in it and I could go back to sleep (because I'm spoiled and he's awesome).
It lived there most of the day.
And then, for nap time we moved it into her room. I had researched tips for transitioning to a big bed and found that most sources recommended the following:
1. Leave the crib in the room so the child doesn't walk in to find her beloved crib gone with no warning.
2. Place the bed where her crib used to be in the room.
3. Do a first try during a nap so that she can fall asleep when it's light outside and get used to the change.
4. Don't push it. Give her the choice if possible.
5. Keep all other sleep-related routines and comforts the same.
And of course, since I'm a rule-follower, I did all of them. I moved her crib to the side and set up her bed in position her crib had been in. Then I asked Lila if she wanted to sleep in her crib or in her new bed.
I asked her again.
We got ready for nap and I asked her again.
Okay. We'll give it a go. I honestly was not planning on doing our first run today. I thought the bed would live in her room for a bit and we'd try in a few days or a week, but evidently she was ready.
I explained that she was not allowed to get out of her bed until Mommy came to get her. I explained that she was not allowed to stand or jump on her bed and that she was not allowed to bring anything into her bed. I explained that she was not allowed to touch the curtains on her windows. I explained that the rules for her bed were just like the rules for her crib. "Okay, Mommy."
I read her a book, gathered her many comfort objects (Lambie, Snuggle, Birdie Blanket, Bink) and she crawled into bed. I tucked her in and was all ready to pat her back until she fell asleep, but then she told me, "I want you to leave, Mommy."
"Okay, goodnight, Peanut. I love you."
"Love you, Mommy."
I left the room thinking, This is never going to work.
I gave her 15 minutes and when she was still talking I went in to check on her. She was sitting on her pillow holding her Lambie. Her Birdie Blanket and Snuggle were on the ground and she and Lambie were, "Picking the butterflies off the blanket." Also, she had pooped.
I changed her diaper and then told her, "I am so proud of you for staying in your bed and for trying to fall asleep by yourself. Mommy will rock you today and we'll try again tomorrow." I rocked her to sleep and put her down in her bed thinking, I'll be happy if she sleeps 45 minutes or an hour.
"Lila! I'm so proud of you!! You slept in your big girl bed all by yourself and you didn't get out just like Mommy told you! Awesome job, Sweet Girl!!"
"Yeah! I did it! Let's go tell Daddy!"
I'm not gonna lie. I cried a little bit. You mamas know, tears of pride and also sadness and disbelief that my girl could really be old enough to be sleeping in a big bed!? I just looked at her and the tears came.
I was pondering this aloud to my parents tonight and my dad said, "Maybe you should just start realizing that you're actually really good at this."
But tonight I gave her the choice again, crib or new bed.
"Okay, so Daddy will rock you and Mommy will come and tuck you in and you'll stay in your bed all night. You sure you want to sleep in your bed and not your crib?"
So I read her a book, the Husband rocked her and prayed with her, then I tucked and kissed and prayed and sang to my big girl. And I asked her one more time if she wanted to sleep in her bed or her crib.
I think there's a part of me that wasn't ready, even if she was. She's so big. She's not a baby. Even the name of her bed declares it: she's a big girl. And that's just a little more than this mommy heart can take.
She's been asleep for an hour already. She barely talked or played at all. This very grown-up countenance came over her as she hugged me goodnight.
"I love you. Jesus loves you. I'm so proud of you. I'm so glad I'm your mommy. Have a good sleep, Peanut."
"Have a good sleep, Mommy."
We'll see how the night goes - it could be a long night. Maybe we'll be back in the crib tomorrow, we'll see. Maybe I just hope we will. Either way, wish us luck!