"The worst night of my life as a mother, bar none."No, it didn't end in injury, a trip to the ER, or anything worse. No one was hurt, except maybe Braden's feelings, and mine. I realize I
- 7:00 PM Braden is in bed
- 7:45 PM Braden still awake, quietly babbling to himself as he often does
- I really wanted to go for a walk with Jay and the dog, so my instincts told me to lock up the house, "just in case" Braden climbed out of his crib at night for the first time. He now likes to try to escape out the front door and garage door to be outside, fun. So I did, I locked up the house and we took the dog for a walk like we always do
- 8:10ish PM get home from our walk to discover that, yes indeed, Braden did get up. MOMMY FAIL. WORST MOMMY OF THE YEAR.
- Thanking God that he's safe and that he wasn't upset in the least to not find us when he got up. I have no idea if he had just gotten up or had been up ever since we left
- 8:15 PM snuggles and hugs in his room, rocking and singing...not asleep but lay him down in the crib
- 8:17 PM thump.....pitterpatterpitterpatter down the hall and into the living room he comes as proud as can be that he can now escape. Hi Mommy! Hi Daddy! (he was SO cute)
- 8:20 - 9:50 PM various attempts at different techniques of putting him back in his crib so he'd stay there. "Super Nanny" of quietly and calmly walking him back to his crib about 10+ times did nothing. He was upset every time I left.
- In different intervals I'd try rocking him to sleep and singing, no dice.
- I finally resorted to putting a lever lock on the outside of his door so he'd learn he had to stay in his room. BAD IDEA. Panic instilled and it scared him so bad. ANOTHER MOMMY FAIL. I bought an extra one of these locks in anticipation of this very situation, for that when we moved him to a toddler bed, if he started getting up in the middle of the night that he couldn't wander and hurt himself and/or get into trouble - to keep him safe in his room.
- at 9:50 PM after lots of crying from him, he was finally exhausted enough that I rocked him to sleep as warm, wet tears rolled off my cheeks and onto his chubby little hands that were hugging my neck
I don't know why, but last night was so hard for me as a mom. In all honesty and truthfulness, I was not frustrated or angry at Braden at all. I felt awful for him. If he felt distrust in us because we weren't there when he got out of his bed the first time...I can't blame him. I think that's why when we locked him in his room, he panicked. I only did it for 5 minutes and couldn't take it, and regretted that decision. I have never wanted bedtime to be a "torture" or to be seen as a punishment. Which is why spanking to stay in bed, is just not an option that will ever work for us. His crib/bed should be a happy and safe place to be, like it always has been. That's why I've personally chosen to never use the threat "do you want to go to bed!" because I do want him to go to bed, when the time is appropriate, and up until now he's always loved going to bed.
SleepEasy book again today for their tips on getting him into a toddler bed, and I know I'm not supposed to do it when he's teething or when he's going through a big milestone, such as a language explosion, which he is...but I don't think it's safe to have him climbing out of his crib all the time.
Big changes are upon us and in all honesty, I am not looking forward to them at all. I'm a firm believer that our children feed off our moods a lot, so I will put on my brave face and stay positive for Braden, I really will. But I don't want to let go of toddlerhood just yet.
In light of this new milestone and with upcoming plans to be gone for Mother's Day, at least we can put off potty training until the third week of May.
Again, I ask you for help. How did you make the transition from crib to toddler/big bed? Was your child an escape artist like I think mine will be, how did you handle it?
P.S. I have wonderful readers who are always kind and supportive. I'm not looking to be judged at this time about leaving Braden to go for a walk last night, so please hold back those comments if you wanted to make them. Last night was seriously one of the hardest nights of my life as mom.