For the longest time I couldn’t even consider moving Lady Jr to her own room, aka my office. The thought of not being right next to her at night, of not being able to just open my eyes and watch her breathe, of not being able to grab her as soon as she woke up and started crying… it was just too much.
Well, that all changed this last week. Both Lady and I are now 100% (okay, more like 90%) ready to move Lady Jr out. Sleep seemed like it was getting better. Lady Jr was still waking up at 9pm ish, but putting herself back to sleep. Then she was able to go until 12am before she wanted food. Which is 5+ hours and way way better than where we’d been at.
But those times she was able to sleep that well were times I spent in the office. For five days I slept in the office part of the night and for five days Lady Jr had an increasingly easier time putting herself back to sleep and staying asleep.
On the sixth day, I returned to the bedroom. And Lady Jr woke up at 9.30 and cried. And cried. And cried. I tried to pretend I wasn’t there, but after Lady came in twice and tried soothing Lady Jr, I finally tried putting my hand on her. Then holding her. Then sshing her. Then, finally, feeding her. But she still cried. She didn’t fall back asleep until after 10.30. Later that night, she woke up again and cried for over an hour. The next night, she woke up at 4am and cried until 6am. That next morning, Lady and I looked at each other, bleary and exhausted, and agreed It Was Time.
Clearly, we were interfering with Lady Jr’s sleep, even by just being in the room. Last night I tried to sneak in at 9pm and somehow the creak of the door woke her up, when it never had before. We’ve noticed over the last few weeks that she seems more and more sensitive to us being in there. There have been multiple times when all it takes for her to calm down is for us to leave the room. The evidence couldn’t be much clearer.
We’ll need to completely re-arrange the office and move a bunch of furniture and then take apart and reassemble the crib and hope to All That’s Good that we still have all the screws for the crib somewhere and then (maybe?) set up the pack-n-play in our room in case we need to bring her back in, but. I don’t know. This might go exceedingly well. We also might end up bringing the crib back into our room. But we’re both agreed that if we don’t try now, right now, before the separation anxiety begins, we’ll have to wait six months or more. And we’re both so, so tired.
I don’t regret waiting this long to put her in her own room. We couldn’t have moved her before this, period. But she no longer needs to eat every 2-3 hours and she clearly has a strong sleep habit in the middle of the night where she thinks she needs us to put her back to sleep. She doesn’t. I’ve seen her put herself back to sleep more than a handful of times now. She just needs to learn the confidence to do it consistently.
Also this way if she decides to wake up at 3am and roll around cooing, she can do just that and I can sleep and not watch her, wondering if I should try to put her back to sleep or not.
We start this weekend. I’m worried and afraid but at the same time – quite hopeful. If nothing else, Lady stays up until 10pm most nights, so she can handle the 9pm wake up and I can get that much more sleep.
If anyone else has gone through the bedroom to nursery transition and has sage advice (or any advice [or extra coffee lying around]), I’d love to hear it. Or just encouragement. I expect this weekend will be rough.