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I Never Thought I’d Become THAT Mom :: Co-Sleeping

Before you had kids, were there things you swore you would never do once you became a mother? You’re not alone! In our series “I Never Thought I’d Become THAT Mom,” we’re sharing our “can’t believe” moments as we reflect on motherhood.

Before my son, Noah, was born, I thought I knew everything about parenting and the best way to approach every aspect. The research showed that the healthiest option was sharing a room with baby, but not sharing a bed. So that was what we would do!

Thankfully, he was the best sleeper ever, sleeping through the night at only 6 weeks old. I still liked having him nearby to peek in on and make sure he was breathing, but had no desire to have him in the bed with me. I was too light of a sleeper and his every twitch would have kept me awake all night. Noah slept in our room in a pack ‘n’ play for three months before moving to a crib in his nursery.

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My daughter and I fell into co-sleeping when she was sick, and now I love it.

When I was pregnant with my daughter, Riley, I assumed we would follow the same practice with her; and for a while we did. She slept in the pack ‘n’ play next to the bed, and I would take her out to nurse and then put her back in the middle of the night.

Things changed when Riley was around six months old. She got a bad cold and couldn’t sleep lying flat. The only way she would stop screaming was reclining in my arms. Exhaustion got the best of me, and I let her sleep in the bed. I swore that as soon as she got better she’d be right back in that pack ‘n’ play. What I didn’t count on was her getting used to sleeping in my arms.

After that week, Riley refused to fall asleep — or stay asleep — anywhere other than on me. My husband was annoyed; I was just too tired to care. This became our new normal.

Before I knew it, I grew to love co-sleeping! I loved waking up at 2 a.m. with that tiny angelic face next to mine, cuddled up to my chest. I learned how much easier nighttime nursing is when baby can fall back asleep right at the breast. Not to mention, she sleeps so much more soundly knowing I am right there if she needs me.

Now at almost a year old, we do a mix of co-sleeping and rooming in. Riley might spend half the night in the pack ‘n’ play and half the night in my bed in between my husband and me. I must admit, sometimes I pick her up, still asleep, and bring her into the bed just because I need some cuddles. And when she snuggles up next to me, I have to wonder how I ever thought co-sleeping was some horrible, annoying thing.

I have no idea how long we will continue co-sleeping. Maybe just until she can sleep through the night, maybe longer. I know my husband would prefer sooner rather than later, but we are just taking it one night at a time for now.

It’s important to keep safety in mind when co-sleeping, particularly with an infant. Kellymom.com, askdrsears.com and the University of Notre Dame’s Mother-Baby Behavioral Sleep Laboratory offer information on helping the whole family get a healthy, safe night’s sleep. 

Does your family co-sleep? Tell us about it!

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2 Responses to I Never Thought I’d Become THAT Mom :: Co-Sleeping

  1. Amy October 16, 2014 at 3:03 pm #

    I said the exact same thing before I had my son but then at 1 week old he started choking on spit up and couldn’t get it out and that’s when we started co-sleeping. Then at 4 months old I put him in his crib with a breathing monitor and the monitor went off at 4 am and he wasn’t breathing. We found out that he had obstructive and central sleep apnea and he had to have surgery at 7 months old. I was so terrified that he slept with me all the way up until after his first birthday and sleeps in his crib just fine now. I even find myself some nights picking him up while he is sleeping and taking him back to bed with me because those snuggles are the best!

    • Carolynne
      Carolynne October 20, 2014 at 4:46 pm #

      Having a child with health issues sure makes it scarier and makes you want to be right there with them every moment, doesn’t it? Glad your little guy is feeling better now and that co-sleeping helped you cope during the bad times!

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