One of the perks of living in a tiny one bedroom apartment in New York City is that you are saved from the hassle of making such decisions as what color to paint the nursery, where to put your super comfy glider, and which high-tech video baby monitor to go with. You can skip over these issues because you don't have a spare room to turn into a nursery, you have no space for a glider, and you don't need a monitor as you can hear your wee little one from every corner of your pad.
Luckily our bedroom did have room enough for Kenzo's crib to squeeze in next to our queen sized bed and still leave enough space for getting in and out. Just enough. Having baby in the room has its advantages and disadvantages. When he cries, its just a hop out of bed before I can scoop him up and console him. When he squeals and shouts, I can just glance over to see if he's awake and needs help to settle, or if he's just having a dream and should be left alone. What I didn't count on is that our little Kenzo would grunt away for hours on end, night after night. My goodness!! I wear earplugs and use a sound machine, and he still wakes us up with his orchestra of noises!! Occasionally he gets banished to his bassinet stroller in the living room, but he's only 6 pounds (2-3 months?) from maxing out on that weight limit... so we're debating what to do.
During his first few weeks, we often brought him into our bed. His father and I both loved to lay Kenzo on our chests where he would doze off ever so peacefully, and quietly!! My mother said babies sleep best on their stomach, and it's too bad the whole SIDS thing led to the "back to sleep" trend. Of course saving babies is not the too bad part, but it is a shame that many babies have issues sleeping on their backs. All that spit up and tummy troubles I suppose.
My husband was all for co-sleeping with our baby. In many parts of the world this is common place and no one would question it. But here, it's quite controversial. Honestly, if I was alone I would totally do it. I'm a very light sleeper and the times we have done it I was so completely aware of his being there and was so protective of him. That said, I definitely didn't sleep all too well. So there's that. My husband on the other hand is a deeeeeeeeeep sleeper. DEEP! The big fear about co-sleeping is smothering - by one of the parents or by blankets. And this definitely happens. We had a close call one night and quickly agreed we wouldn't be bringing baby into our bed (for sleep anyway) again.
Perhaps we'll move his crib to the kitchen, but that would require disassembling and reassembling the crib - good luck with that dad! It would also mean having to be super quiet if we're still awake when the baby is sleeping, and also not being able to use the kitchen when he's sleeping. This is especially difficult as his father gets home from work rather late quite often. So, we're crossing our fingers that our little man grows out of his grunting and groaning, which are perhaps related to some kind of reflux due to an immature digestive tract. Fingers crossed!!
We are planning to move to a bigger place before baby #2 is in the picture, which is several years off, trust me!! I can't even imagine staying in this sized apartment with 2 kids. But then I think back to my days teaching in Japan. I was in a class of junior high school kids and we were talking about the layout of their bedrooms. In the US, this would be a normal discussion with kids talking about their beds and TVs and all that stuff. But I remember several kids being like, ummmm, I don't have a bedroom. Nothing shameful - completely normal. Co-sleeping or at least room sharing over there is pretty common place. One mom I used to tutor told me she shared her futon bed with her two children and I remember being so shocked. But as she explained how it was so much easier and they all slept better, it made sense. I would have LOVED that when I was a kid. Instead, my mother would watch "Poltergeist" with me on TV and then scoot me off to my own bedroom where I would hide under the covers in fear! Hmmm. In fact, I'm still rather afraid of the dark. Maybe sharing a room with two boys is quite good for me after all!
So, do you co-sleep? Share a room with your tot? Have an amazing celebrity-style nursery for us to drool over? Got advice for silencing a grunty baby?? Please comment below!!
I'm a NYC metro area mom blogger living in NJ with my Japanese husband & our 3 kids (twins plus 1), focusing on fun and honest product and travel reviews, saving moms time finding the best for their families! Find what you need in the menu bar or search section above!