Monday, February 26, 2007

my worst fear realized

Well, it happened. i've beend dreading this time for months. i've had nightmares about it. the thought just made me shiver--

Erica has learned how to climb out of her crib.

why is this so bad? 1) I was scared that she'd really hurt herself. 2) i was afraid of the transition to switch her over to a "big girl" bed... b/c she can get out whenever she wants.

One of those fears was not a problem... the other came true. She never got hurt trying to climb out of her crib. it was actually kind of funny. she'd climb over the ledge and then step down to where the matress is, stepping on it w/ her feet thru the crib slats. and she'd just hang on there, scared and not sure how to get down the rest of the way. so she'd just stay there, holding on to the side of the crib, screaming for help.

Thankfully, we already had a toddler bed purchased. It was being stored at my parents' house. she learned to art of crib-climbing on friday, and thankfully that next day i was headed to my parents' house. my sister and i were getting together w/ a friend who lives up that way. My dad helped me put the new bed in the car, and i was able to take it home sunday and set it up myself! woohoo, i'm great! Erica "helped," which was good b/c she could see what was happening and could feel like part of it. When it was finally done, she was so happy! she put all of her stuffed animals on it, she jumped around, snuggled under her blanket.

she soon realized "oh, i dont get to sleep in my crib anymore." she actually tried to LIFT UP her mattress to put back in the crib. she struggled, saying: "heavy, heavy, heavy..." But soon she got used to the idea. So she played even more. [Hence the pictures that i've added.] When it was naptime came sunday afternoon, she slept in her crib. Luckily, she was really tired so it didnt take too long for her to fall asleep. but still, i could hear what she was doing. At first, she got out of bed and ran to her dresser to pull out some books. she read thru some, then went to the door to leave... But she couldnt open the door. [we put one of those doorknob covers on it so she cant get out.] she cried and cried. then went back to her bed. talked to her animals, bounced around. Then got up again to get more books. then back to the door to pound. After a few times of this, she finally laid back down in her crib and fell asleep.

Wow, that didnt seem too bad. It only lasted about five minutes, and she really wasnt screaming loud. I was so relieved. I thought: bedtime will be a cinch."

not really. she climbed up the stairs by herself and into her room. she laid down, but as soon as i turned to leave, she got up and screamed bloody murder. for ten minutes she screamed and screamed, pounding on the door and throwing things around. Finally, Hubby went in to get her. He suggested i go in there w/ her to help her settle down. so i did. I took erica back in her room, turned on a small lamp to give just a little bit of light. i got out a book to read, then another... each books that end with the child sleeping. Finally i read "Apple Dumplin's Day." [About strawberry shortcake's baby sister... an excellent choice]. On the last page, Apple is lying in her crib, her head on her pillow, a blanket up around her, and cuddling with her duck. SOOOO... i told erica to lay down just like Apple. Erica put her head down on her pillow, i covered her w/ her blanket, and found her stuffed animal duck and let her hug it. After several times of saying "now, be like Apple Dumplin. She's staying in bed, sleeping nicely. She's not crying or running around." Then Hubby came to the room to give her a kiss goodnight, and we both left together.

Erica cried. but not screaming. and she actually stayed in her bed. she only cried for 3-5 minutes. After twenty minutes, i went in to make sure she really was in her bed. Well, she was asleep and in the same position as when we'd left: laying with her head on the pillow and the duck next to her. The only difference was that she had kicked off her blanket. So i tucked her in again and then snuck out.

[PS: i have a LOT of pictures that i'll be adding over the next few days. I havent added pictures in a long time, so i have lots to catch up on.]


Akemi said...

Wow, great job on setting up Erica's toddler bed! I can never put stuff together. I aways need my husband's help doing something like that. I wish my daughter sleeps on her own bed like Erica. She starts out in her bed every night, but she always manage to come to our bed around 2a.m.:-(

Toni said...

She is such a cutie! Are you fibbing on her? I can't imagine her screaming! I just don't believe it!

I love her bed! Very pretty!

Becky, Mom, Mommy, Hey you, said...

such a cutie...and lucky 2 1/2 year old is out of bed 1, 562,000 times a night..out--back in--out--back in..keep going...until I have to just (sometimes) let him get in bed with me to fall asleep then move in..

Becky L said...

akemi-- the most amazing part is that i didnt even have directions for the thing.

toni-- oh yeah, she can scream. wow, yeah. its not pretty.

becky, mom, mommy, hey you-- once she's asleep, she normally stays asleep. its very rare that she wakes up at night. Only when she's sick. But getting her to fall asleep hasnt always been easy.

Toni said...

Okay, 2 Beckys- y'all can just HATE me, because Luke still LOVES his sleep! 12 hours a day! He usually asks to go to bed at 7pm, if not earlier, and I get him up at 6 or 6:30! David was a different story!

Momish said...

I have the same fears, but unlike you am not there yet. I love that bed though and your daughter is just too adorable!!! I am glad it didn't turn out SOOO bad, now I feel a bit more at ease for when my time comes!

Crazy Working Mom said...

That's a very hard transition. But, I think that those nightly rituals definitely help them to calm down and gives us that one on one time with them as well. Great pictures!