We hit another milestone with my youngest child – he’s out of the crib! We took the side off his crib, making it a bed. My toddler is 3 1/2, so we felt it was time. My toddler disagreed, but he’s been hesitant to do a lot of things (potty training has NOT been easy). He also has a speech delay, which also makes it harder to see if he understands things.
Here’s how the first night went.
7:55 PM Tucked him in with his two blankets and his stuffed Thomas the Tank Engine. Congratulated myself on the pool noodle hack — I cut a pool noodle and put it under his sheet, so he couldn’t roll over.
7:56 PM He starts crying because I didn’t put his night light or sound machine on. I quickly fix that and go out again.
8:05 PM Skylar comes out merrily and wants to read a Dr. Seuss book. He sits on the couch and starts to read. My husband and I look at each other and I grab Skylar and place him back in bed.
8:10 PM We hear a thump and then crying. He fell out of the bed (the pool noodle hack did not do its job). I pull out the blow up bed rail that we used for my daughter. The fabric needs to be washed, but at this point, I need something to protect Skylar from falling out of bed.I try to attach it to the bed but the room is dark and I can’t attach it properly with the clip. So I tie a big knot, securing it to the bed. It’s not the best fix, but it will do..
8:15 PM He comes out again. Looks confused as I put him back in bed again. No partying dude, you’re supposed to be sleeping!
8:20 PM He comes out again and tries to run into our den. This time I refuse to speak to him and I put him back in bed. I realize that this could be happening all night. I put my husband on watch (he’s painting on his latest canvas) and go into the other room.
I hear loud singing as Skylar sings “Laurie Berkner’s Here Comes the Dinosaurs”. He finally quiets down around 8:40pm and luckily does not get out of bed again.
My husband check on him at 11:30. He finds him sleeping peacefully on the floor. He comes and gets me to see. As I go into his room, Skylar slithers back into his bed and seemed to still be asleep. Kind of freaky!
I check on Skylar at 1 am. I’m still worried that he’ll fall out, so I unearth a Toy Story sleeping bag and lay it on the floor next to his crib.
To our surprise, there’s no further peep.
I hear him at 6:21 the next morning (hello Daylight Savings time, it was really 7:21). He actually stayed in his little bed and waited for me to get him.
Wonder what tonight will bring?
Tips for Transitioning Your Child from a Crib to a Bed
1. Wait until your child is ready.
2. Use a bed rail. You can get one like this dexbaby Safe Sleeper Convertible Crib Bed Rail -just make sure it will fit on a crib or toddler bed, some bed rails are only for twin beds. Or you can choose a inflatable bed rail like this The Shrunks Sleep Secure Inflatable Bed Rail. The one I used when my daughter was little is from Toddler Coddler and does not seem to be sold anymore.
3. For extra piece of mind, pad your floor. We had foam mats down and then I put a sleeping bag down on the floor. When we transitioned my oldest child to a bed (he had just turned 3 and we needed the crib for my daughter’s impending birth), we had a futon mattress on the floor next to his bed.
4. Your toddler is going to get out of bed, after all, no more crib rails to keep him/her in. Have a plan on how to deal with it. Don’t laugh to engage them, just put them back in their bed. You may have to do this a lot, especially the first several nights.
But it will get better. Trust me. Tips for Transitioning Your Child to a Toddler Bed
Products that can help: