If you read my last post, you’ll already know that Max is now 6 months old… which is the age at which the NHS guidelines say its safe to move babies to their own rooms at night.
Terry greeted this news by cracking open the champagne and ordering a set of blackout blinds for the nursery. I, meanwhile, greeted the news by thinking, “Wait: why can’t TERRY just go and sleep in the nursery if he thinks it’s such a great idea?”
So, yeah, I have issues with the idea of Max sleeping anywhere other than under my watchful gaze, and these issues stem right back to his birth. On that first night in hospital, I refused to go to sleep until Terry solemnly promised to stay awake and keep an eye on the baby… but, of course, the guy was pretty tired by then, so I had to stay awake myself, to make sure HE stayed awake, and, by the time I got home the next day, I was so tired I was practically delirious. That night, Max slept in his moses basket, which we put on Terry’s side of the bed, on account of my c-section scar making it really painful for me to get up – and I know this, because I spent the entire night hauling myself up anyway, so I could stagger round to Terry’s side of the bed and make sure the baby was still breathing.
It was a fun night, for sure – and it was to set the tone for the next few days.
On day four, then, I confided in my parents that my new plan was to just never sleep again, so I could watch over Max ALWAYS, and, the next morning, they turned up with the Chicco Next to Me Bedside Crib, which he’s slept in ever since.
The Next to Me was a Godsend, in that it finally allowed me to get some sleep. While I’ve grown in confidence in that respect, though, I have to admit that I’m still approximately halfway to Crazytown, on the Crazytown Express, when it comes to this particular issue. We’ve been really lucky in that Max generally sleeps pretty soundly at night. Me, on the other hand? Er, not so much, really: I mean, I definitely sleep better than I did in those first few weeks – like, WAAAAAY better – but I still wake a couple of times during the night to check on him, and now that we’ve started putting him into the nursery for naps, I’m constantly looking at the monitor, or, well, creeping into his room to check on him.
Honestly? I’m not ready for him to move into his own room at night. And, I mean, yeah, it would be nice to get our bedroom back, and I’ve read the studies claiming that babies sleep better in their own rooms, but… I like having him next to me. It reassures me that he’s OK, and, on the odd occasion when he does wake up in the early hours of the morning, all I have to do is reach over and place my hand on his chest, and he’ll normally go back to sleep. (I say “normally” – we’ve had two 4-5am wakeups this week, plus a middle-of-the-night feed, which he hasn’t done for MONTHS now, so, yeah: sleep regression? The heat? Him just messing with us? Who knows …)
So, I’m not ready – even although Max himself probably IS… and Terry DEFINITELY is.
“Well, when WILL you be ready?” asked Terry, perplexed. He’d basically assumed that, the very day Max reached that magical 6-month milestone, he’d be packing his bags and getting the hell out of Dodge, so, when I answered this question with a vague, “Er, dunno, really. When he’s one, maybe? Or possibly never? Does ‘never’ work for you?” he was just a little bit taken aback. And I get it: I do. I obviously don’t ACTUALLY want him sleeping in our room forever (Especially not when he’s an adult, with kids of his own. That would just be weird, wouldn’t it?), and I know he’d probably be perfectly fine in the nursery. He has, as I said, been going in there for naps lately, so it’s not like it’s all brand new to him: we have a video monitor AND an audio monitor on him when he’s in there, both of which alert us to the slightest sound from him – so what’s the problem?
Er, it’s just ME, really: me and my overactive imagination, which takes a lot of pleasure in waiting until I’m just about to fall asleep, before piping up with some cheery reminders of all of the terrible things that could happen to my precious baby during the night. For now, then, I’ve told Terry that yes, Max will definitely be moving to his own room, and it’ll definitely be happening sometime before he leaves home.
But when, though?
Terry is under the impression that most people make the move right on the 6 month mark: I’m not so sure, so I need your help to settle this one. Tell me, fellow parents: when did you move your baby out of your room and into their own? And am I REALLY so odd for wanting to keep him beside me for a little while longer? In other words, are you Team Amber or Team Terry on this one?