When Mami has to Deal with a Big Girl Bed

April 7, 2014

We’ve had this same conversation for months (… and months):

In order to make this room a play room, the kids have to share a room.
Would two cribs fit in one room?
What about that other queen bed? Get rid of it?
But if we got rid of that bed where do we read to them?
Ok, so we could get rid of one crib and move Rafaella to a big girl bed?
But what about naps? 
Would Rafaella nap in a big girl bed?
Would Santiago nap with her in the same room?
Will she even like a “big girl bed”?
She loves her crib so much.

For months, we deliberated, discussed, and then decided. And then when we had finally decided, we un-decided. Rafa stays in her room in her bed and Santiago in his too. No one moves yet.

If I’m honest, I made these decisions (time & time again) from a sentimental, illogical place. (Yes, it’s the same place that I make many decisions from; the corner of Overly-Sentimental Irrational Mother Drive and Illogical Emotional Lady Ave.) I wasn’t afraid she’d fall out of the big girl bed or that my sleeping would be sacrificed at the altar of a big girl bed. I was afriad of what the big girl bed meant. A big girl bed meant one step closer to her being a big girl. A big girl bed meant she was my little girl one day less. A big girl bed meant she no longer needed the literal (and imaginary) walls of security.

Waaaaaaah! Sniffle. Tears.

As much as I joke that I’m ready for these kids to be old enough so that I could (take your pick):

I don’t like the speed in which these two are growing. Who do they think they are, growing so fast? She’s ready for a bed, really? I suppose she’s ready for college too. Why not just move her out of our home and have her contribute to a 401 plan. (Sorry, ended up on that corner again.)

I started prepping her all day. Telling her that tonight she was going to sleep in her bed. I changed the sheets to a previously never before used bed and set it up with a comforter and pillows and blanket – a proper bed instead of the jumping/landing zone it was before.

The evening was the same as always but tonight after her bath and her pajamas and her screaming, “I LOVE YOU, PAPI,” to daddy who is putting Santiago to sleep in the room down the hall, we laid down in her bed, her big girl bed. For the first time in over a year, I was unsure of what to do at our bedtime routine. I didn’t want to freak her out with something new so I asked without asking if she wanted to lie in her bed so that she thought but kinda knew she didn’t have a choice (confusing parent tricks).

“Rafa. Let’s lay in your bed?”
Whew… that part was easy enough.

We read a book titled Siempre. I thought it appropriate for the night. When it was done she asked me for her tete.

“Do you want your pacifier now, Rafa?” I was willing to stay in there as long as she needed.
“Si,” she confirmed. So I got up to get her pacifier and brought it back. And she continued, “Quiero mi tete. Para dormir aqui en la cama. Como la gente. — I want my tete. To sleep here in the bed. Like the people.
“Ok, Rafa,” I laughed

She asked for “Música I Love You” which is what she’s named the lullaby I sing her 3 or 4 times repeatedly. After singing her lullaby only once last night, she was already snuggled into the pillow like the north pole to the south pole of a magnet. She muttered, “I love you mucho mucho,” her cue that she’s good to go and that I was, in fact, also good to go.

I knew if she fell asleep that she would be asleep for the night but I secretly hoped she would get up and need me to tuck her back in, that maybe she wouldn’t like her big girl bed or being a big girl because then that would mean she wanted to stay my little girl. Irrational, I know. But no such thing happened. I was so proud of her last night and so sad for me.

This morning, I heard, “MAMI!” and a door slam at the exact same time. I jumped out of bed and opened my door and there she was in the hallway, not sure where to go since she had never just walked out of her room alone before so these walls appeared totally different then she had ever seen them. So out she walked confused but happy. Beaming with happy about her first night in her bed. And then she ran down the hall to me.

Turns out she’s still little enough to run into my arms and that just because she doesn’t need her literal walls of security doesn’t mean she doesn’t need these arms of security.

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