I am a worry worm and terrified of co sleeping. I have heard of too many stories of rolling on top of your littles and have heard of SIDS stories. I try to do everything in my power to help prevent, even though I know it is not something that really anyone knows why it happens. With both of my children, they stayed in their basinet next to my bed until 9 months old. They both have heart monitors under their mattress and a fan always running (lower risk of SIDS). Getting your children to sleep is so tricky at times, it almost is funny how difficult it can get. Children never want to sleep, when all mama’s want to do is sleep.
My son has been pretty good in his crib, but since everyone in their mom has said ” wow, he doesn’t climb out of his crib”, and he now does! No more naps during the day and is just a pill because of it. Consistent is key! He gets out, I firmly but nicely put him back in his bed. They will think of any excuse to get your attention and for you to come “save them”! I explain to him that it makes mama scared that he may fall out and hurt himself and that it is dangerous for him to walk around in the house in the dark. I try my hardest to no get fed up, but it is hard. Right! So I sit outside his door and every time he opens that door I take him back to his bed. A few tricks that have seemed to help.
1-Leaving the door open at night- Leaving the door open at night helps him understand that its truly bed time and quiet in the house. This took time, but I kept with it and now my son stays in his bed. Granted I had to hang out in my room for a few weeks so that my son saw that it was quiet out in the living room, he knew it was bed time for everyone not just him.
2-Having a truly nightly routine. Children need consistency. My son is a very visual person. If we read books, say prayers and sing songs every night he understands that it is time for bed. A two year olds brain is still developing and they don’t quit understand why and when they have to go to bed, other then because “mama said so”. So a routine helps so that they understand the timing of the day.
3-Night light and sound machine– I am one loud mama. Late at night once my husband comes home we chat and watch movies til about midnight without waking the little ones. The sound machine really helps when you are trying to get nightly cleaning done and not having to be so quiet doing dishes. The sooner you start with a sound machine the better. To them it sounds like when they were still in the womb, so the like to have something fimilar and sleep better.
4- Chart- A weekly chart really helps show the child a visual. Chores can help ware your child out and teach them good cleaning habits at a young age at the same time. For example, clean up toys, take out trash, feed dog, get mail, bedtime. There are tons of cute ideas on pinterest of course. Find a chart that your child will like so it will help with the chores. Bribing never hurt no body! We believe in bribes. Giving rewards always helps as well.
5- Red light green light- My son loves to play red light green light, and is really starting to understand the difference. He knows red means stop and green means go. He understands that when the light is red he has to stay in his room, and when the light turns green he can come out. I tried the whole locking him in his room( judge me, I don’t care) and I hated it. It made me feel horrible and I immediately thought how its a fire hazard. I was terrified that he would be locked in over night and not be able to get out in a fire. The light system really works and it keeps this mama from worrying all night long.
It is hard to get children to obey, but what is harder is keeping them safe. We must not get angry or violent with out littles. Their little brain don’t understand what is wrong with just wanting to snuggle with mama in her bed instead of theirs. Stay with it and don’t give up.