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A tough transition — Little Guy leaves the crib

Submitted by on Sunday, 1 June 2008 No Comment

Originally published May 21, 2007, thehive.modbee.com

Harsh reality has pre-empted tonight’s sentimental ode to the end of babyhood. The sappy remembrance will air at a later date, reality permitting.

Little Guy hates his big-boy bed. He glares at it, as if it’s responsible for famine in Africa and $3.40-a-gallon gas

He’s not wild about me, either. I robbed him of the blessed comfort of his crib, cold-heartedly tossing it in the garage and replacing it with this thing . “How could you ruin my sweet little life?” his eyes ask.

This one was supposed to be easy. But every time I think I have this gig figured out, the Motherhood Muses are tittering around the corner, ready to smite my butt.

Except for scattered tummy and teeth pain, Little Guy never has had trouble sleeping. He recently dozed off over a bowl of Cheez-Its. He slept in two different beds on vacation, adjusting to each in about five minutes.

He took to his big-boy bed immediately in the showroom, climbing in and lying down with a huge grin. This is going to be a snap, I thought.

“Bah ha ha ha ha,” the Muses roared.

Big Guy’s switch was long and painful. It would have taken even longer, but I was on deadline – Little Guy was about to be born.

We bought Big Guy’s bed about four months before Little Guy’s due date. For two months, I left both beds in his room, figuring I’d ease him into the big model during naps. The first day, he climbed in and fell straight to sleep.

It took seven weeks to get him back in, and he went only because he had no other option. We’d moved the crib to Little Guy’s future room.

I remembered that as Little Guy’s graduation approached. If Big Guy, who’s 90 percent fussier than Little Guy, went without protest once the crib was gone, all I had to do to get Little Guy adjusted was to banish the crib earlier.

“Bah ha ha ha ha,” the Muse bellowed.

We dismantled the crib this morning, and the big-boy bed came around noon. Little Guy explored, giggled and bounced. His glee ended when he realized he had to sleep in it.

Exhaustion overcame loathing, and Little Guy consented to a nap around 2 p.m. – three hours late. He awoke refreshed and hating bed again. And sometime during the nap, his umbilical cord had reappeared, except in a much shorter version. He was no more than three inches from me the rest of the afternoon, breaking only to eat.

Just after dinner, Big Guy, whose eyes were emerald by now at the combination of attention paid to Little Guy and the new bed, decided he wanted to sleep with his brother. Hmm … I thought. This could work. Maybe Little Guy will be more comfortable with his brother in there. I lectured Big Guy about being quiet, not keeping his brother awake and not fighting. He agreed. He probably even thought he meant it.

The Muses didn’t bother to laugh this time. They just filed their nails and rolled their eyes.

As we went through good-night stories and songs, Little Guy stole prayerful glances at the bed, trying to will it away. After I laid him down, there was peace for about 20 minutes. He babbled a bit, but it didn’t sound too tragic.

But then, as Big Guy brushed his teeth, “Waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

So Big Guy and I were off, and it was three people in one tiny twin bed. We did songs again and, after some jockeying for position, they seemed to settle.

Yeah, right. It took two more trips to the room to get it to take for real. At that point, it was more than an hour past Little Guy’s bed time.

I don’t expect it to last until morning. At some point, someone will wake up with his brother’s foot in his mouth, or Little Guy will remember that I ruined his life. And I’ll be back for another round.

I’ve learned to tread cautiously with the Muses, so I’m predicting at least five more nights of this.

Meanwhile, I’ll be the one at Starbuck’s ordering an extra bold with a triple espresso shot.

Copyright 2007 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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