One to remember: Sleeping – The Crib Sheet

by thelifesavour

Is she sleeping through the night yet?

There was a time when I dreaded this question, cringing the way you do when you hear a bad joke for the 100th time, responding only with a hollow laugh, and no punchline.

No one asks us anymore. Those who don’t know us assume that, at one year, you are. Those who know us know better than to ask.

I’m tired (in every way) of talking about your sleep, or lack of it, but it has been such a major part of your first year of life that I can’t leave it out. So I will just tell you two bedtime-related stories that have made me smile, in a hazy, sleep deprived way.

Comfort

One suggestion for helping children to fall asleep on their own is to introduce a comforter. I tried this with a beautiful soft striped rabbit, designed for the purpose, but you were totally uninterested and would rather fall asleep with the AC remote control clutched in your hand than the bunny ears.

Maybe you are more comforted by something substantial and solid.

This idea was reinforced recently when your cot mattress was temporarily on the floor in the corner of your room. Each night as you were trying to fall asleep you would keep getting up on your knees and pressing you forehead and hands against the wall. On a couple of occasions I even caught you licking its cool green surface, like a giant slab of pistachio ice-cream (you must have read my blog post).

Maybe this is what they mean by comfort eating.

The Crib Sheet

We recently visited a Montessori nursery, thinking about possibility of you going there some time next year. It was nap time while we were looking round and we peeped through a door to see a room full of sleeping toddlers, each on their own mattress on the floor. Amazed I asked the teacher how they managed this miracle.

Well, each child has their own crib sheet and we….

For a split second, before I realised that she was, of course, talking about pieces of material for baby mattresses- I thought she meant the other kind of crib sheet*- pieces of paper which tell you how to do something. I had an image of the nursery staff consulting these ‘cheat sheets’ for each child and then following the steps to get them to sleep (rocking, singing, feeding, patting etc).

But in reality this isn’t necessary as apparently, after a few days all the children ‘get it’ and they do sleep.

I went home wondering if you would too and also what I would write if I did have to prepare a crib sheet for you. I thought about it a lot one evening when I was in the process of getting you to sleep and in the end I came up with just a one word answer, my missing punchline:

Relax

* While writing this post I looked up the origin of the expression ‘crib sheet’ and found that ‘to crib’ (in the sense of cheating/stealing) is the same word as the baby’s crib, as once upon a time cribs (baskets) were used to conceal stolen things. Maybe that’s what’s happened to all your missing hours of sleep- they were hidden in your crib all along.

 

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