Babies, Bedding & Sleeping Arrangements
It feels like a lifetime ago that Levi was Ada's age. 10 weeks to be precise. 10 weeks old and we are still very much playing it by ear. It seems to be working for us, this playing it by ear thing. I remember getting to this stage with Levi and hounding my friends for advice on 'routines', searching for any information on how on earth I could get an on-demand breastfed baby to figure out a schedule. I think the jolt to the system of baby life had me craving some normality, some prediction in my day that I could count on. I learned quickly: babies don't work that way. We wrestled with timings, read books, wrote out routines and stuck them on the fridge (I kid you not) and then swiftly kicked them to the curb. A life of predictability just wasn't/isn't for us, I suppose. We gradually found our footing as most everyone does as we got to know our little person, our Levi - responding to his cues and meeting his needs (and everyone crying when we had exhausted all of the cue-guessing and still hadn't a clue what was wrong).
This time round Ada has had to slot into our family without much thought at all. She comes along everywhere; hauled in and out of the car for school runs, getting fed just about anywhere imaginable. She has not yet had a nap in her own room or even slept in her own cot. Early on in my pregnancy with her, Dave and I knew that we didn't want to enter the battle zone of sleep this time around. Sleep has become too precious to us, too essential for function to mess around and battle with like we did before. I think we over thought it too much with Levi, ignored and probably denied our instincts to just go with his flow, intent on having him adjust to our sleeping preferences. So focused we were on creating routine and autonomy in this very dependant human that we probably created some barriers to raising a child that felt essential sleep security. So much I am learning that while we raise them, they are also raising us.
So, with that learning in mind, Team Wiggins now have sleeping arrangements built for security, connection and ease. The boys sleep in Levi's room (where there is a single and a double bed) and us girls are in mine and Dave's room - Ada camping out in her Sleepyhead Pod beside me on our bed (that pod is the best baby thing we ever invested in - when it buys you extra hours of sleep it IS an investment).
Each morning, Levi comes into our room and wakes Ada and I up with a hundred kisses, some sort of great piece of information or news of a terrible grievance. The other day at 6.30am he arrived in to tell me that "babybel in Lanzarote language is babbibell". Excellent, kiddo...Zzzzz. Our bedroom has become a new hub of the house - the place where things kick off in the morning, where Levi gets his school uniform on before he goes down for breakfast. It is the place where Dave and I exhale at the end of a long fulfilling day by watching copious amounts of box sets on the laptop and shovelling our faces full of treats that we don't get to eat during the day for fear of having to share them.
Having worked out our new arrangements, I was feeling like our bedroom was becoming a bit of a pit; a cess pool of baby spit up, wrapped up nappies and piles of clothes to be put away. It was losing it's vibe as a calming place and becoming a bit of a jack-of-all-trades dumping room so I recently claimed it back and added some things to give it a bit of warmth and zen. Wanna see?
I feel like no bedroom seeing-to is complete without indulging in some excellent bed linen. This stonewashed linen duvet cover and pillowcase set from LinenMe is just about the best addition to this room I could have asked for. It's so soft (softer again with every wash) and is completely durable for the unexpected spillages etc that come with small kids. I was worried that linen might be a rough texture to sleep on but it's not at all and the added bonus is that the linen look is nicely dishevelled, meaning you only ever have to roughly make your bed to make it look presentable! These are small wins worth celebrating, people!
We are all co-sleeping in some respect or another and it is working out really well for this season (for more excellent insight into the benefits of cosleeping and 'the family bed' check out Lucy's brilliant post here). I will not fight it or rush it this time. I will not be moved by the whispering voice of well-meaning loved ones that don't understand or approve or anyone else who tries to speak of us 'making rods'. Our tiny people need our closeness and all of our sleeping is better for it.
I'm sure there are many many variations of sleep tactics and choices going on with the parents that are reading this, so tell me: Do you co-sleep? Are you adamant about keeping your bedroom as an adult-only space (that sounds a bit rudey - it's not meant to be)? Are night-times like a game of musical beds with you? How does it all work in your house?