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From Crib to Toddler Bed, I am exhausted!

19 October 2010 11 Comments

by Erica Ashmore

It has been I’d say hell for the last two weeks.  Well maybe the first week for sure since we transitioned from crib to toddler bed.

It all started one Monday after noon, we put our sweet boy who was a perfect sleeper down for his usual 12pm nap.  Well for some reason he wasn’t ready to go and he cried a little then stopped.  “Oh Good!” we thought, he’s gone to sleep.


Thump and a knock on the door.  I almost hit the ceiling because who the heck is knocking on the door in my sons rooms.  Great-Grandma? A dear co-worker of mine that passed away (even got a strange phone call from work at 1am but that’s another spooky story since no one was at work to call me at that hour)

So no ghosts but our sweet boy.

He climbed out of the crib and we freaked.  He’s just standing there, like it was nothing to climb out.  We also scrambled to order a Zipcar and I was calling Toys R Us frantically for the crib conversion kit.  I actually yelled in a nice way for the stock guy to look for another kit for me after he said there weren’t any left.  When I was at another location they told me that three were there as I knew the time to switch was around the corner.  When I called that location the stock guy told me they sold 2 that morning.  But because I was “cool” sounding ( his words not mine) he’d look again and hooray, he found the 3rd one!

(Oh wait, someones knocking on his door, LOL! I try to get as much done before he wakes.  Yes, he knocks on the door when he wakes up know, it’s actually quite funny to hear)

So we got everything we needed and thought it’d be smooth sailing.  Wow, were we ever wrong.  I thought he’s slept in his crib since he was 2 weeks old, why would this be different?  It’s the same crib it’s just missing the front piece and it has a little rail?

We followed our usual routine and after 3 attempts he went down.  Only to wake up at 3:30am wailing, so I go in.  I hold him and instantly he calms down and goes to sleep I but him back down, he stirs again and begins to whimper. So back to the recliner I go and I end up sleeping on it with him in my arms.  I feel as though I have a new born all over again and have to go through the whole steps again for “sleep training”.

A couple nights go by and it’s getting easier.  I still had the occasional 3am wail, we left him to “cry it out”, and that was a mistake for now he’s old enough to associate that bed time is not good anymore and he looks at his bed as not a place to rest but a place that makes him upset.  We’ve even brought him into bed with us twice just so we both get sleep; I just can’t sleep every other night on the recliner and I am the only one that can soothe him back to sleep.

So I decide that night the next night, I’m going to sleep with him in his bed if I can fit my arse in it.  I managed and we had a great snuggle.  In fact it was such a special snuggle that I will share it with you all here because after a week of hell this made up for it.

I wanted to re-introduce his new bed to him, so I warmed his milk, I asked to him to join my for a cuddle and had a the bottle in bed with me.  When he finished he gave it back to me and we laid for a little.  He then took my hand and put it on his chest, over his little heart and held my hand there for a little while. All this time, I guess he was just scared?

It was the sweetest thing I can by far remember and it made me smile and heart swell up a hundred times more, I peaked at him and all I could see was his little smiling face looking at me.  That’s it I thought, this made up for the week of hell.  He drifted off to sleep and slept the whole night even when I managed to climb out of the bed.  Success finally!

Did it work the second night? Um…..not so much but at least I’ve shown him his bed is nice and a place of rest.  At least I think?!

Now I just rock him to sleep and wait for the limp sings and body jerks that he’s falling asleep and that’s when I put him down.  It’s a whole new routine for us but I think I have it figured out.

2nd week now, it has gotten so much better.  He may be getting his 2yr molars in which may explain his anguish, and to be honest, he does go to bed later now too, like 2 hours later than usual.  It works for us and makes bed time much easier for us as well.  He sleeps through the night and gets a good 11-12 hours.  I’ll give him some teething medicine from Boiron before bed just to soothe him and off we go.

It does get better and  just when you think you got it all figured out, you don’t.  That’s what makes parenthood a roller coaster of a ride I guess. I tell you though, I sure had some long nights with the transition.

How about you?

Erica is a blogger and member of the BornFree Mom Panel

How did you/will you help your little one transition from crib to bed? One person who shares will win a BornFree Training Cup! If the winner is a fan on Facebook, they’ll be sent a bonus prize! Good luck.

The winner is Carly with the email address geoff*********@gmail.com. Thanks for entering!


  • Clare said:

    We too thought it was going to be so easy. Well why wouldn’t it be? It was the same crib, just no sides. (sound familiar?) It ended up that I would have to snuggle in with my dear one until she was asleep…
    Sure didn’t take her long to figure out that she could get out and creep into mummy and daddy’s bed. She is six and still creeps…

  • Clare said:

    I am a FB fan ;)

  • Lori said:

    Cosleeping has worked for us since four months old. It allowed me to feed her with ease through the night and still get enough rest so I didn’t turn into a crazy sleepless wreck.

    BUT … and a big but, now we are faced with a toddler that kicks, scratches and generally takes up 95% of the bed. We could get a new bed – but when she decides to wean we are going to get her a toddler bed.

    She has a really pretty and expensive crib, I mean laundry basket but in all fairness we aren’t going to take it apart & move it to our bedroom to go ahead with our starting small.

    So step one. Toddler bed shopping. Current obsession is Tinkerbell or Toy Story and therefore I think finding a great bed with some cute bedding will allow her to WANT to sleep in there.

    Step two, we are going to place it in our room and try to move her there each night after she falls asleep – then teaching her to fall asleep in there and eventually move her to her own room without crying to ensure that she is having positive associations with sleep.

    … or get a bigger bed (:

  • Lori said:

    I am also a facebook fan (:

  • Lisa M. said:

    I can’t relate to this new phase just yet since my little man is only 7 months old, but this is a beautiful post. Isaiah is not a fan of being rocked — if he doesn’t fall asleep nursing we have to “trick” him to sleep (I know, I know … I’ve set the stage for sleep trouble down the road and it’s like a vicious cycle. We’ll save that one for another time). But two nights ago, he was *super* teething (his front bottom right tooth was about to erupt) and he woke up as soon as I laid him in his crib. So I rocked him, and he settled and just stared into my eyes with his palm flat on my chest (skin) while I sang to him. And he just drifted off. I could’ve stayed there for hours …

  • Carly said:

    I have not had to yet, and I am scared too. Our little girl is 2.5 and just that, she is little, 24lbs, so right now she is still ok in her crib, doesn’t climb, doesn’t even sit up in her crib. I am not sure why, but |I am going to roll with it. Good luck with everything, I hope it works well for you guys!

  • leslie said:

    I have 3 girls. The first did okay making the transition. The second it was awful started early not wanting to sleep in her bassinett. It became a regular night occurance that she had to sleep in our bed. The good news after her never never sleeping in her crib was she dis she well going from sleeping with us to sharing a room with her sister and now they share a bed. My last little one, easy peasy right into the crib she went no problems.

    I think it really depends on the child. If you can get it done then great but I also firgure they are only little once so enjoy that extra cuddle time while you can :)

  • Mama Ash said:

    That’s for sure! Cuddles with them are the best.

  • stephanir said:

    For my daughter, the transition was super easy. She’s always been a good sleeper, and she had never tried to climb out of her crib. I fought my husband till I was blue in the face that she didn’t need to be transitioned until she tried to climb out. One day while I was at work, he took the liberty of taking the crib down and setting up her Dora bed. I was livid, but surprisingly, she loved it! She was climbing all over it saying “look mommy, this is my big girl bed!”. The first night was amazing. She played for awhile, amd when all was quiet I went up to check on her, and she was fast asleep on her bed. I’m super lucky that it was so easy for us. Its even great because now when she wakes up, she plays with her toys before yelling at the top of her lungs for me, which let’s me skeep in a little :)

  • Carly said:


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