I always amaze myself, even if it’s only a few days, in how much I fret and have anxiety over things. Although I do “learn” every time a new event arises that causes said anxiety, I always tell myself “no, this one is DIFFERENT.”
Current example is my daughter moving into a “big girl” bed a couple weeks ago. There’s so much that has gone on in the last couple weeks where I should have written, but it always felt like I didn’t have the energy.
I did post questions about this in a number of different places and got some great advice, but I just didn’t bother to put it here for some reason.
In any case, I thought the “move” would go much easier. My daughter has always been a great sleeper (please don’t hate me other parents) and she was excited about the new bed, but there were SO many change factors that I really wasn’t conscious of how it would affect her.
It started with my husband being sick, but then it was having to continue with the switch as Thanksgiving weekend was the only weekend to really get most of it done. Although I’m glad now it happened, I felt so guilty that my husband was doing it all while sick (painting, moving furniture, etc., etc.) that I just didn’t know what to do with myself. I did what I could as far as running to Home Depot for paint and other items and keeping Jackie busy, but I wanted to do more.
The initial stage was completed and we were happy–but Jackie was not. Why? Well, I didn’t think about this ahead of time, but here were all the factors:
- Her Dad was sick
- New bed (we didn’t convert her crib)
- New room
- New room looked entirely different due to painting
- Bed in different place
- New sheets
- Room not completely done
- Most of house in disarray where she couldn’t get to toys
- Our full bed (her initial “big bed” that she called it) had been taken down
- Mom anxious
Wow. If I had made this list during this project, I probably could have calmed down. Any normal human being would be a bit challenged by all of that, but then take a kid who only knows her same environment for as long as she’s alive.. well, that would freak anyone out.
The first couple days were hard and she was basically back in the crib, but luckily she liked the bed and the room. It was just hard to get used to. Then I got the brilliant idea to move her stuffed animals in there and some toys like I was going to do anyway. That helped, like 50%. I was happy, but it was still tough. At around day three, I was able to get her to take a full nap in the crib.. SUCCESS! But the main issue was: when could we get her out of the crib officially and out of our room?
We were sleeping with her in the same room now and I thought this would go on until we had to leave in another week or so. I just didn’t know what to do with all of this regret, sadness and anxiety, but I kept moving forward.
After a couple days, I wrote my mom’s lists, talked to friends, and got some wonderful advice. I felt better and now had some tools to work with. I brought out my trusty “Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child” book that hadn’t been opened in a year and a half, and that was helpful too, but still not helping the situation 100%.
After talking to my husband, he had the idea to sit in the room with her until she fell asleep. I was VERY leery about this as so many people told me not to do it at all as then they expect you to be in there and you are back at square one. But I let him take the lead on this one, as I was getting somewhere with the naps, but not overnights. It was time to pass the torch.
That night Jackie slept thru the night in her own bed and didn’t get up once! Joe was in there for almost an hour an a half, but he calmed her down and she felt comfortable enough to sleep. But the big question was, would it continue?
We were highly successful on naps, which was great, and continued our own methods for the overnights. Last night, which I believe was night 7, we had success. My husband put her to bed, she only came out once and then she was out.
During all this time, I had also been playing with the length of her naps and activity during the day. At least it was all becoming clearer.
So now, we have a solid plan, her room is almost fully completed, most of the house is liveable and I’m not anxious anymore. As with all of these things “this too shall pass,” but as I’ve been telling everyone.. I get it, but WHEN??
I guess there is no answer to that and for the next big transition I just have to remember that it will pass and we will work it out. I just have to keep my mind in check when it fast forwards weeks and weeks of misery and it hasn’t even happened yet!
For those that are reading this and I’ve reached out to you, THANK YOU for your advice, kind words or just checking in. Although this wasn’t a huge ordeal, it could have been and I’m thankful that I’m not ashamed to ask for help. This is definitely one place where I have grown throughout my years and thankfully it allowed for some great success this week.
Onward and Upward!