Our nursery is empty. This weekend our tot made the leap from crib to big boy bed. We weren't going to mess with it for a few more weeks. We had just had house guests, everyone was a bit tired and we were worried that it would take a few days to get thing back on track before we could even think of starting another transition. But the room has been ready for awhile and it seemed like every weekend on the calendar has some reason or other to postpone things.
Finally, Friday night we just decided to go ahead and plunge forth, assuming that if it didn't work out we could always stick him back in his crib and try again in a few weeks. We talked extensively with him about sleeping in his new big boy room in his big bed. His dad stressed to him that the big boy bed was "not for jumping, not for playing, only for sleeping". Later, after I had read to him and we were rocking he told me "big boy bed not for jumping or playing, only sleeping!" so it must have made an impression on him in some way.
I won't lie - our bedtime routine on Friday night was L - O - N - G! I dawdled through the bath and pajama routine. We read two or three short books, took a while to say our prayers and then spent quite awhile just rocking in the chair. I was so anxious about putting him in the bed. I agonized over what I would do if he cried and fussed or got out and chased after me. But finally, I knew I was going to have to see what would happen, so (crossing my fingers) I placed him in the bed and tucked the covers in around him. He snuggled right down with his stuffed puppy dog and I told him goodnight and left. Then I stood in the hall for about 5 minutes listening to his chatter and wondering if he would get out of bed or not. He didn't seem to be so I went downstairs and watched some TV with the hubs.
The tot continued to chatter over the monitor for awhile (extended, I think, by the visit his father insisted on paying him "to make sure he was alright" which somehow resulted in his being rocked some more - sucker!) but eventually he simmered down and got quiet. When we went to bed, we poked our heads in to check and see if he was in the bed or on the floor or what, and he was all snuggled up under the covers, sound asleep.
So, thus passes another hurdle of parenthood. So far anyway. Naps have been a bit rockier but overall, he seems to have settled in fairly well. Our only hiccup has been that he wants to get up and play as soon as he wakes up and we have continued to try to stress to him that he he needs to stay in bed until it's time to get up (i.e. when mommy and daddy come and get you and NOT before sunrise!). I have to admit - as relieved as I was that this transition went so smoothly (because really, with all of our other issues with food, sleep, potty, etc weren't we due for an easy one?) much like Heavenly Sarah, I was also sad that our nursery is now empty. "Not for long" say my well-meaning friends and family members. And they are right. But it won't be a Baby Ben in there anymore. That part of our lives is over and it's hard not to feel a bit wistful remembering what it was like when he was tiny. But when he was small he couldn't give me hugs, pick out his clothes, tell me about his day or have long conversations with his puppy dog. Motherhood always seems to be an exercise in bitter-sweetness.