Before our little bundle of joy arrived, we were very aware that we wanted to co-sleep. What we weren’t aware of, however, were the many different ways that co-sleeping can happen and how difficult it would be to find a method that works for us. I googled it, of course, and found this lovely contraption:
So, I thought I had the whole thing figured-out and didn’t really concern myself with it. Then, our boo arrived. I don’t know if you can conceptualize it (I certainly couldn’t) but a newborn is TINY compared to that thing. Yes, the beloved co-sleeper I had been so excited about, became that thing. I wasn’t going to put my baby in that thing. It was so big and he was so small. So the first few nights, Luca slept like this:
I would have loved to have Luca sleeping on my chest but because I was still recovering from the birth it was too difficult for me to sit-up while maneuvering him for breastfeeding. Most newborns sleep for long stretches the first two nights, which is what Luca did, after that however, we needed a new plan. Caleb wasn’t getting the best quality of sleep and he started to fear that he might fall into too deep of a sleep and Luca could fall off of his chest without him knowing. So, I panicked because of course we still wanted him in bed with us but I couldn’t put him on my chest either. So we figured that I could have him on my side of the bed. The only problem? We needed a special co-sleeping guardrail that would prevent Luca from falling out of the bed. So I told Caleb that we absolutely NEEDED this device NOW. My husband, being the wise and awesome man that he is, didn’t argue. He went on Craigslist and found someone who was selling a guardrail about 30 minutes away from us. Ah, I sighed with relief, feeling like our co-sleeping woes were over…. Well they weren’t. The dang guardrail was HUGE! It cut I to our precious bed space AND it was really long. Again, I was still in recovery and scooting to the end of the bed to get out was not a good idea. We tried it one night. Mama was not happy.
Luckily, we had received this amazing device, called a Snuggle Nest, at our Baby Shower. We were planning on using it just for traveling purposes but now it seemed like the perfect solution…
Unfortunately, after about two weeks, even The Snuggle Nest got old. Want to know why? Check this out:
That’s our Queen sized bed with the Snuggle Nest in between where Caleb I would lay. Not the most comfortable thing for us. Plus, I missed snuggling with my hubby. So, finally, during week four we attempted the Arms Reach Co-Sleeper again. This time we threw the Snuggle Nest into the Co-Sleeper. Sounds silly, I know, but hear me out. First off, he slept really well in the Snuggle Nest so I thought it would make the transition easier for him. Also, the Snuggle Nest has a cool little device with a light and white noise. The light worked perfectly for breastfeeding or just checking on him at night. It’s not too bright so it wouldn’t wake-up Caleb but it’s bright enough to help me do what I need to do.
Well, then that got old because the Co-Sleeper was so large that it was difficult for me to get in and out of bed considering I was still recovering down there. So, finally we decided to brave real bed sharing. Now, I wish I had the resource that Caleb had found, but I don’t. Caleb read that it’s best to sleep like this:
That positioning prevents the boo from accidentally being squished by us. This strategy gave us a little more room in the bed than when we were using the Snuggle Nest. The only problem? Every night, when I woke up to feed Luca, I’d find that Caleb had unknowingly scooted up to the top of the bed during his sleep. Ugh. This freaked me out because I thought that maybe he could accidentally roll on Luca during his sleep. Men (and everyone else) just aren’t built with the same baby radar that Mamas have. It’s fascinating. So anyway, now we’re back to having Luca in the co-sleeper, this time without the Snuggle Nest. It’s a bummer because I don’t wake as easily to feed him as I did when he was in bed with me so he will get kind of upset. Also, he doesn’t seem to be as comfortable and will wake, when wet or whatever, easier.
It seems to me that the ideal solution would be to have him in bed with us, on my side only, using the bed rail. Oh, and having a King sized bed. That seems perfect… Anyone have that setup? I’d love to hear about it! Until then, we’ll just have to keep switching it up until we find what works best!
Update: We didn’t get a King Size Bed (yet) but we did move Luca into the co-sleeper next to me and it’s been awesome. Now the hub and I can get our cuddle on but I still have quick access to the Boo for breast-feeding. Now that he’s quieter and sleeping longer, let me tell you, life is good.