The first night we brought Eli home, we laid him in his cradle, the one my MIL bought us and my husband put together and he cried. We had him swaddled, he was tired, and he cried and cried and cried. So I brought him downstairs and he slept on me, all night long. We carried on like that for a solid month and a half, occasionally trying him in the cradle again, and each time with no success.
And then the reflux started in earnest and that made sleeping on his back even more difficult. The cradle mattress was too thin to try to incline, and we were stuck. Someone recommended the Rock N Play, which gave both the incline and the sense of snuggliness he seemed to need and within a few weeks, he was sleeping by himself in it every night.
And all was well. But here’s the thing, he’s 4 months old and he cannot sleep in this adorable little bunny bed for the rest of his life. He is going to learn to sit up before long and it won’t be safe at that point, so we’re trying, without success, to transition him to the Pack N Play. We tried last month and the first night he slept in it for one stretch of sleep, the second and third nights he wouldn’t go to sleep in it at all. So we backed off and decided he wasn’t ready.
We tried again when we were on vacation and the hotel crib was just a glorified Pack N Play. But he had a cold and immediately began choking on snot. Yes, it was lovely. But, while we were on that vacation, he slept, flat, on our hotel bed twice. So I was hopeful that when we got home and he was healthy, we’d finally have some success.
So last night we tried again. Now, I made a few mistakes. First, I decided to do this on a night where he pushed his bedtime way back to almost my bedtime, so I wanted to sleep. And second, he wasn’t particularly sound asleep after eating like he usually is. Every other night this week he’s been like a bag of sand after the last feed.
I laid him down in the Pack N Play and almost immediately both legs popped up into the air. His eyes were still closed, but he was very near awake. Slowly he’d start to lower his legs and as soon as they hit the mattress, he’d startle and they’d pop back up again. For 20 minutes this carried on, occasionally he’d reach up and grab one of his feet, just for good measure. He also thrashed his head from side to side to side to side.
And then started whining. And so, because I am a selfish pushover who very much wanted to sleep, I put him back in his bunny bed. I don’t know how to ease him from the snuggly reclined surface to the harsh flat Pack N Play. Eventually he’s going to sleep flat in his crib, but I’m not ready for him to be out of our room yet. I can’t decide if I should just not push it or if I should keep trying. I know the transition to his room is likely to be a tough one, I just feel like it will make it tougher if he’s transitioning to his room AND to a totally different style of sleeping.
So I’m asking for advice. Do I keep letting him sleep in his little bunny bed until it’s time to move to his own room (honestly, I have zero idea when I’m going to be ready for that transition), or do I keep trying with the Pack n Play. And if I keep pushing, how can I make it an easier transition?