Yet Another Thing I Thought I’d Never Do: Sleeping With Baby?
When I found out we were going to have a baby, I started mentally making a long, long list of do’s and don’ts that I figured were pretty much set in stone. Don’t have a medicated birth. Do breastfeed. Do work on setting up a schedule for baby.
We knew (and know) the dangers of co-sleeping, which our parent prep class instructor harped on pretty extensively: the baby could suffocate. The parent could unwittingly roll over onto baby. The baby could become dependant on co-sleeping and refuse to sleep in his or her own crib or bed once the time comes.
And yet, a little over two months in, here we are:
Or, pseudo-co-sleeping, really. Lila goes to bed in her crib around 10:30 or 11:00 each night, wakes up around 3 for a feeding, and then wakes up again between five o’clock and six. During that final wake-up call, she isn’t hungry yet, and she’s still sleepy…but she’s also intensely active. Usually when I go in to check on her, she’s grunting, kicking her legs, flailing her arms out, and generally looking a bit possessed.
And then I pick her up. Her body immediately goes slack, and she closes her eyes again. The peacefulness that takes over is almost instantaneous. And so, because I know we can all get another hour or two of sleep…I’ve started bringing her back to bed. As soon as she gets in bed with us, she snuggles right up against my body and falls back asleep, nuzzling her fuzzy little head against my chin.
I’ll be honest—these early morning hours are delicious. It’s nice to get a bit more sleep, but it’s the tenderness of having her sleeping body next to mine that really gets me.
That being said, we’re both starting to worry that we’re setting ourselves up for a rough time of it when Lila gets a little older. Is she going to refuse to sleep through the night? Is she going to refuse to sleep in her crib? Will we be like Mayim Bialik, still sleeping with Lila in our bed when she’s almost seven years old? Let me go ahead and say that co-sleeping to that extent is definitely on our don’t list.
But right now, it means more sleep, and it means more snuggling, and so somehow it has shifted from a don’t to a do.
Thoughts on sleeping with baby? Any fans of co-sleeping out there? Are we basically sabotaging ourselves by letting her sleep with us like this?
I’d love to hear your thoughts!