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Our 18-Month Sleep Sitch

As y'all know, we co-sleep and bed-share for the most part.  Usually, once Little L nurses down for the night at around 10:00 pm (give or take an hour), we move her from the family bed into her crib.  When she wakes up and starts fussing, we move her to the bed and she stays with us for the rest of the night.  This often happens at around 1:00ish in the morning.  She will then rouse again from sleep at about 4:00 am and 6:00 am, nursing back to sleep until around 8:00 am when she wakes up babbling random words that she knows.

However, for the past week we were in E-town, staying with my in-laws.  They don't have a crib, and their guest bed is but a mere queen size.  This makes the sleep situation a little less than ideal, but now that Little L has gotten into the habit of rolling around in her sleep, bed-sharing has become downright dangerous.  The guest bed, you see, has a footboard that extends about 4" out from the bed on both sides, with two very sharp points that have bruised Hubbs' and my legs on numerous occasions when we were wandering around the room in the dark.  On the second night we were staying there, Little L rolled so close to the edge of the foot of the bed that, had she done another 90' roll, would have resulted in her being seriously injured by this treacherous bed frame.

Out of sheer necessity/fear, we hustled to the nearest IKEA and got ourselves a "Montessori floor bed."  Actually, it's just a 4" foam mattress with cute pillows, sheets, and a blanket, but the idea is very Montessori.  We bought their cheapest twin mattress, and because of time constraints, didn't even have a chance to off-gas it before we began using it.  We did, however, find time to wash the sheets and mattress liner.  The floor bed was set up on my in-laws' berber carpet at the foot of the queen bed.

Anyway, for the rest of the week, I slept on the floor (well, on the mattress) with Little L. 
And let me tell you - she *loved* it.  She loved flopping her little body on the bed and saying, "I lay down! Nye nye! Sleepy time. Bed!" She enjoyed doing her little gymnastics routine on it during the day.  She found it thrilling to just roll around on it, and read on her back.  As far as comfort, it wasn't all that horrible for me either.  Sure, sleeping against the wall sometimes was a pain in the neck (literally), but I figured out how to position us so that I wasn't backed right against it.  The mattress, however, was sufficiently soft to not hurt my arms when I nursed propped up on my side, while also being adequately firm enough to support my back at night time.

When it came time to roll the thing up for storage, Little L wasn't quite ready to say good-bye.  She kept lying down in the middle of the mat, making it impossible for us to pack it away.

Anyway, it was such a success that we have decided to buy one for her to be set up in her room!  Yes, we still own two cribs (one is out on loan, the other is in our bedroom), and yes, the crib does technically transform into a toddler bed.  However, the accessibility of a floor bed is so much better for Little L, particularly since she does do a lot of rolling in her sleep.  A more elevated surface would just make the fall that much more painful and dangerous.  At 4", however, to roll off wouldn't hurt at all.

The next step will be for her to play on the bed and get accustomed to it.  Then I will probably start nursing her down on her own bed, and sneaking off into our bed once she has gone down for the night.  My hope is that by the time she is two, Little L will be sleeping in her own room for most of the night.

Because we don't have awesome berber in her room, however, we will have to start looking for a good rug to place in her room (or at least beneath the bed and around it) so that when she does roll off, it's not onto a super-hard, super-cold surface.  Hubbs wants a long, shaggy, super-soft rug, but I am leaning towards a low-pile berber-like rug.

Anyway, the floor bed (so far) has been a rousing success. And I'm hopeful that one day soon, I will get to sleep in my own bed again ;)

What are your experiences with floor beds? Any tips for setting one up on hardwood, or a good lead on a good rug?


Sharon said…
Yay! Our babe hasn't rolled off in his sleep (yet). And he mastered crawling off the 6 inch crib mattress really well - he looks like a little lizard creeping off! haah :)

Glad it's worked.

Oh, and I think any rug would work. 100% wool feels waayyyy better, IMO.
Mrs. Loquacious said…
We ended up just using the IKEA rug that we already had in her room. But since she hasn't been sleeping on it F/T yet, the rolling off hasn't really been an issue. When I was a kid, I used to roll out of the floor bed, out of the room, and down the hall. I expect no less from my progeny ;)

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