Wednesday, September 16, 2009

New Digs

This weekend I decided to go ahead and convert Makensie’s crib into a toddler bed. I’d asked some of my mommy friends about it, and most of them said to wait until she showed interest in a big-girl bed or started crawling out of her crib. Well, she’s definitely shown interest in big-girl beds (she loves crawling in and out of my bed and her buddies’ beds), and I don’t think she will ever try to crawl out of the crib being she’s quite careful by nature and knows I’ll come running if she calls. So, with little possibility of her crawling out and her desire for a bed she can climb into on her own (and my desire to not have to lift her in and out all the time when she’s “playing” in her bed), the decision was made.

A week or so ago, my brother called and told me that they had moved my nephew into his big-boy bed, and that’s what got me thinking. My nephew is three weeks younger than Kensie, and although they’re quite different (Bryce was crawling out of his crib) in many ways, I figured if B was ready, so was K. (Turns out B is just on a mattress on the floor right now, which is a bit different than the journey on which we were about to embark.)

So early Saturday morning, I sat down with the conversion instructions and got to work. I assumed that since it was a “toddler” bed, there would be a bit of a rail on the open side so Kensie wouldn’t roll out but could still get in and out on her own, but the further I got into the conversion, the more it looked as if one side was going to be completely open. And sure enough, it was! At first I wasn’t too worried. This is a big-girl bed, after all, so I guess it’s time for K to be a “big girl.” But when my baby looked up at me and said, “Mommy, what happens if I fall out?”, my heart sank. What happens if she falls out!?!

So I went on the hunt (knowing full well I was not about to convert the toddler bed back into a crib, because what I had just done was hard work, and K would never let me change it back now!) for something that would deter her from rolling right off the mattress and onto the floor next to her bed (which now was covered with a doubled-over rug for extra cushioning). I dug through closets and the garage and just about every cubby in the house until I finally came upon my Total Body Pregnancy Pillow, which I slept with in the latter months of my pregnancy. You know, the full-body pillow that looks like a snuggly snake with a hook at one end? Anyway, I pulled that out and stuck it into the slats and along the open side of K’s bed, and voila: instant guard rail (as long as she doesn’t thrash about too much, because it is, after all, just a pillow)!

So at naptime, K was really excited to get into her new bed, but was not too happy when she saw my guard rail invention. “Whazzat, Mommy?” “Nooooo, I don’t want dat piddow!! Move it, Mommy!!” She wouldn’t go down with the snake pillow up, so I had to let her sleep with no protection. I went to my room, listened to the monitor, and waited. Nothing. First attempt in the big-girl bed sans a guard rail: success!

Saturday night, after I put K down (with the pillow rail installed after much back-and-forth between us), I sat down to watch some HGTV and to listen. I was still stressed that she’d fall out because I know what a restless sleeper she is. I went in her room and checked on her at least five times throughout the night, but she made it again! Sunday nap and Sunday night, same. She did great, no falling or rolling or jumping, she didn’t even get up and come into my room (another of my initial concerns—waking with an extra human being in my bed every morning).

So, needless to say, we’ve made it through the weekend and beginning of the week in the big-girl bed, and it’s amazing how “big” Makensie seems to me now. She’s not a baby anymore! She tells me exactly what she wants or needs clearly and concisely (“No Mommy, wait right they-a!” she says with her pointer finger right up next to her chin). She runs and gets things on her own without me having to do it. She’s using the potty (when she wants to, but she’s still doing it). And now, she’s sleeping in a regular bed. When did my baby transform into this little human being?

I’m excited Makensie is growing into such a fun and beautiful little girl, but I’m sad that it’s going by so fast. I guess what Mom always says is right on: “Enjoy your child every single day, because one day you’ll wake up and she’ll be sitting across from you with a glass of wine explaining why she’s chosen to move across the country with her boyfriend of six months who waits tables for a living and can’t wait to teach you how to surf.”