Big girl bed talk. My friend, Anne, asked me to write about this on my blog. And while I have like no solid advice on this topic (or proven success), I did feel this is a momentous moment in Miss Maddie's life - and this is the main reason I started this blog - so here we go :)
This was NOT at all on our radar. Like even a little bit. We have two cribs, so Maddie was in one and Mikey in the other and everyone was happy!! The thought of having two kids potentially popping in my face at 3 am was something I wanted to put off as long as possible, especially with a newborn hanging out next door too!! But in typical Maddie fashion, she had other plans. When Mikey was about 6 weeks old, Jimmy had just put Maddie to bed in her room and was on Charlie's room putting him to bed. I was nursing Mikey in our bedroom and all was quiet. And then all of a sudden, I hear (and see) Maddie pop around the corner and burst into Mikey's room looking for he and I! To her dismay, we weren't in there. However, when I called her name--- I realized this could not be good!
I asked her if daddy got her out of her crib. She said no with the biggest grin on her face. I couldn't help but laugh. I mean the look on her face was pure pride and joy. She knew she wasn't supposed to climb out of her crib, but had executed it perfectly. I took her hand and walked into Charlie's room. When Jimmy saw us walk in, he was mad and asked me why I got her out. I told him--- I didn't. And his face looked exactly like mine did--- oh sh*t. Here we go. Right when we somehow think we have this there kids thing figured out, as parenting would have it....this nice little curve ball.
We put her back in her crib, told her she cannot jump out and it was really bad. We moved the little chair next to her crib and the prayed that she wouldn't do it again.
Luckily, she didn't for a few weeks. Then we had some friends over and they got up to mischief together in her room and everyone was going in and out of maddie's crib (including her big brother) essentially teaching her how to escape. Haha. None of us noticed they were upstairs until we heard them laughing-- and it was too late. She's a decently fast learner...so she knew just how it was done!!
Not surprisingly, that night she climbed out. We put her back and told her no. Then the next night--- she was not having life and was just screaming half the night. We had both had it with her and Jimmy said to turn off her monitor and leave her in there. So we did. About twenty minutes later...I hear some sound coming from Mikey's monitor. But when I look at him, he's peacefully asleep. And that's when it hit me--- omg Maddie is in Mikey's room!!!
Sure enough, I opened our door and every door on the second floor was opened (including Charlie's door). I found her in Miley's bathroom of all places, crying for Mom. Oh goodness. Thank goodness when our boys are asleep- they sleep hard because neither of them woke up. I grabbed her and took her back to her room, put her in her crib and then went back to bed and told Jimmy it's time to start thinking of this transition--- she's set on it. Just like potty training at 18 months. Another milestone that Jimmy and I aren't ready for with this girl...but she insists and we pretty much have to oblige.
So my parents offered to take the big kids and have a sleepover one Saturday night. Instead of taking the front off her crib, we just decided to move all the furniture (my old furniture that I had- and actually bought (long story!) as a kid that I was saving for Maddie!) upstairs and go all out. I helped Jimmy move everything downstairs and then all the new stuff back up after Mikey was asleep- and I was quickly thankful for my new found muscles!
After we were all done, I'm not going to lie. I had pretty mixed emotions looking at her empty big girl bed in there. It made her seem so old!!!! Like how was it already time for this?? And this was also my furniture when I was growing up (that I randomly also purchased as an 8 year old with some modeling money I had - because yes, that's what I was obsessed with an an 8 year old - I would say it had a pretty good ROI, huh?!!?). Also, I just bought some ice cream sheets (per her suggestion) from target's pillow fort collection that matched the current paint and curtains! While I was sad about her growing up, I couldn't wait for her to see it!! And she didn't disappoint- she was soooo excited when got home after church on Sunday!! I love this video and the beginning "Oh my goodness" and when she starts jumping on the bed singing 5 little monkeys!! Haha. Oh gosh she's a doll.
Well, nap time that day was a complete disaster that we just gave up. Told her to come downstairs because it was silly to fight. Needless to say, we were terrified for what the night would bring. Luckily, it went well because she was so dang tired!! The next night (Monday), not so much luck there. She would scream and cry and get out of her bed. And pretty much every night after that. Constantly!!! And we would go in there and try to lay with her but she was inconsolable.
The next Sunday was daylight savings and we fell back an hour. While I was up with Mikey (fed him and then he went back to sleep) and then Charlie, ended up laying with him in bed...I figured Jimmy would be nice enough to get up with Maddie when she was up and stirring. Well, turns out that he didn't--- and she ended up finding the Vicks vapor rub in her room and taking off her pjs, putting on her socks and shoes and rubbing it all over her body. Oh my. She was quite proud.
The next week, we still were having nighttime issues and nothing seemed to work. We threatened. We bribed. Nothing would even calm her down. Finally, one night I listened to her scream in my face for like 20 min in the middle of the night. I finally told her I was sick of her acting like a baby and was going to put her in the pack n play. I snuck into Charlie's closet without waking him up and set it up and put her in it. She was screaming still, but that lasted like 2 minutes and next thing I knew she was dead asleep!! That's when we started questioning if we did the right thing loving her straight to a bed- maybe it was too much. Charlie didn't have these issues and we had him in the toddler converted crib thing for a while.
She decided for a few nights that was where she wanted to sleep, so whatever. She stayed in it and asleep. She somehow figured out once how to take the child lock door thing off, so we turned the door handle around...that girl!!! But most nights - she's all over the bed looking like THIS:
Or we walk into her room and it looks like THIS:
I'm happy to report though, after about two weeks of pure drama, she is doing SO much better and absolutely loves her big bed now and fills it with her lovies and babies!!! She's not the best at bed time, but getting so much better and Jimmy and I love getting to lay next to her to read books before bed and then snuggle. She's picking up on her brother's sweet habit of rubbing my face and telling me she loves me (he always does that still!!).
So there you have it. I have provided you little guidance or tips. But I recommend patience and alcohol. Because surviving anything with a two year old is soooooo frustrating!!! She's fun, but man she is a pistol. And now she's a little pistol that won't stop growing up!!!!