For the first 3 months (give or take), my baby would only sleep in bed with me. Correction: He would only sleep on top of me in bed. This made my own sleeping situation a bit challenging, but as any new mother will tell you, you do what you can to get by
Fast forward a few more months, and the beautiful crib we bought is finally getting some use. And while he never slept for more than a few hours at a time, I was happy with my child’s progression, and felt confident that I could gently encourage him to sleep on his own.
And then sitting happened, rocking happened, crawling happened, standing happened, you get the idea. All the while, separation anxiety was setting in. The world was becoming a scary place and sleeping alone was the last thing he wanted.
Despite my instincts, I kept trying to get my son back in the crib. I heard voices warning me that I had to do this lest I want my child in bed with me for the next 20 years.
After several sleepless nights and stressful days, I surrendered to the universe, wore my baby to sleep in the early evening then brought him to bed with me that night. I did all of the things sleep trainers tell you not to do, but I didn’t care. For the first time in a long while, sleep wasn’t an ordeal.
I will still gently encourage my baby to sleep in his own space, knowing full well that it might take months to get there. And even, when he is sleeping on his own, I will still welcome him in my bed (just not for the next 20 years).