Friday, June 13, 2008

To Sleep or Not to Sleep

As I mentioned earlier, Elijah has outgrown his crib. We quickly converted his crib to a toddler bed and surrounded it with pillows until he learned how to stay in bed without falling out. Three months later he is still falling out of bed multiple times each night. Each time he falls out of bed, we get up and gently settle him back into bed.

Tired of, well, being tired all of the time, Al and decided to buy a bunk bed. We thought between having a larger bed and adding a safety rail we could get Elijah to stay in bed and that we might actually get some full nights of sleep again. So last Sunday we went to IKEA and found a reasonably priced bunk bed and brought it home. It was bedtime when we got home so we left the boxed bed downstairs. Al left Monday morning for a trip and I thought I would wait until he got home to put the bed together.

On Monday I was excited about the new bed and had the day off anyway, so I thought I would start getting things ready for the new bed while Al was gone. I started by rearranging the toy room so we could move Josiah's old bed into it. Then I decided I may was well move Josiah's old bed while I was at it. Then, since Elijah has been sleeping on his crib mattress on the floor anyway, I decided to take apart his crib and put into storage. Once I finished that I realized it was only mid-afternoon.

To make a long story short, I ended up assembling the new bunk bed and rearranging the toy room and the boy's bedroom on Monday afternoon. I did most of the work by myself while the kids occupied themselves watching videos and playing on their own. Josiah helped a bit when I got into a bit of a fix. I kept saying "Dangit!" when something didn't work quite right and Josiah kept responding, "Mommy, that's a bad word. Please don't use bad words anymore."

Josiah also used part of the time I was busy working on the bed to crumble some of the styrofoam packing all over the house! I knew he was up to something when I heard him
laughing nefariously (seriously - he was cackling while he went around on his crumbling mission). Elijah used part of the time to dump foam alphabet stickers all over the family room. By bedtime I had finished building the bed, cleaned up the toy room, bedroom and family room and vacuumed most of the styrofoam up. Oh yeah, I also did a few loads of laundry. The next day I woke up tired, bruised and sore. Actually, I'm still bruised and sore.

To make matters worse, I'm still tired. Why? I found out that you can't use a safety rail on a bunk bed. It's not safe. (sigh). Thinking I was oh-so-smart I put the mattress crib on the floor next to the bunk bed and put the safety rail on the crib mattress. I figured if Elijah fell out of the bottom bunk he would land comfortably on the crib mattress and that the safety rail would keep him from rolling onto the floor (and waking us up). Not so. He woke me up two or three times last night. He falls comfortably onto the crib mattress and then ends up scooting off the head or foot of the mattress, which are still open. Then he kicks the floor to sooth himself back to sleep, which always wakes me up and I just can't leave him sleeping on the floor without feeling guilty. Well, that and I can't fall back to sleep with all of that incessant foot banging!

So, our investment of approximately $400 and 6 hours of hard labor for a good nights sleep resulted in a battered and bruised body and a new bed that both kids think is fun. It did not, however, result in better sleep for Elijah or for the rest of us. Oh well. He has to learn how to stay in his bed all night eventually, right? Until then don't be surprised if I'm a little tired and grumpy.

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