misadventures in parenting//getting my 4 year old to sleep in her own bed

Bailey has always been a wonderful sleeper. At birth she was sleeping longer than three hour stretches. At a week or so she started the five hour stretch and just before 10 weeks she was sleeping through the night. She's never really broken away from this at night but somewhere along the way monsters and the dark became a part of her life and she started sleeping in our bed. 

This isn't a problem, exactly, because I love that kid and having her in bed with me was basically the highlight of my life. I've always missed her when bedtime came around but with her in our bed I didn't need to. She was always there, slept wonderfully, and I got to snuggle up to her whenever I wanted. The happiest moments of my day involved slipping into the warm bed with her and falling asleep holding her hand.

But, see, the thing is, we eventually realised that we were not addressing her fears {and sometimes Husband and/or I didn't sleep the best}. We were letting her be scared {and so much so that she was often scared of the monsters in her room all the time} because we {and mostly I} were being greedy Bailey hogs. But we were stuck because B. was so entrenched in this big bed sleeping world and it just seemed too damn hard. So what did we do? The stuff of parenting dreams...


And it worked {that kid loves school}. Because she ran right off into her room and went to bed. She has a story {or fifty}, gets tucked in, has kisses, etc and then we leave the room {light still on because she likes it that way} and she goes to sleep on her own. Of course, she's still welcome in our bed but for the majority of the night/early morning she sleeps in her own bed and she's so proud of herself and so fearless now that I know we did the right thing. The way we went about it, however...

It's almost as bad as that time, months ago, when she told me she wanted to sleep in her own bed with her newly purchased bed tent {because it keeps monsters out} and I {good parent and all} pouted and said "but I'll miss you!" And she felt so sorry for me that she ditched her plans so I wouldn't be sad. Yup...

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