Last week Toddler H moved for her cot to a big girl toddler bed. She’s been in it a week so I thought it was time to be brave and tell you about it… How did we decide it was the right time? What bed did we go for? How did it go?
You might already have a clue how it’s gone if you read my happy list for this week… But here is a full post on this huge transition.
How did we decide it was the right time?
H is now 2 years 2 months, but since last summer, at around 20 months, she has loved jumping on the beds in shops and snuggling down. IKEA was an experience, dragging her away from those comfy toddler beds, telling her she could have one when she was bigger. She looked so tiny but oh so comfy.
We did wonder if we’d be making the move in August, as she was saying she didn’t like her cot, refusing to go in and it was all a real struggle. A huge fight every night. Luckily we avoided it, instead H has mostly fallen asleep on us. Something we weren’t keen on as, hoe would we get her into a toddler bed? Would she stay? Would it be the same situation us stuck on that wretched chair reading book after book until she fell asleep on us?
Making that leap…
We realised H was really out of sync after Christmas, she was starting to refuse to go to bed, and now she could tell us. She’d be up til 9.30, incredibly tired, but would shriek and scream so much. We found some You Tube videos to try to show her how other toddlers go to bed. They worked, not only that she climbed into her cot herself. We rejoiced! The first few nights she didn’t actually do it herself, I lifted her in at the right moment so she thought she did. We then managed to read books in her cot, something she’s never done – she always screamed the house down if we tried. Then one night hubby took her and she just did it, jumped in, pulled her covers up, snuggled down and hubby ran out the door. Actually we were shocked, just like the toddlers in the videos she climbed.
However, a few weeks later our elation deflated and she started refusing to climb in for me. She was fine for hubby, but not me. Typical eh? So I said “can you show mummy how you can climb in. I have to see you can do it so we can get you a big girl bed” she refused. The next night same thing, but she led me to our room and pointed at our bed. Now, she’d been full of the cold and woken screaming at 2am the night before and she’d slept in our bed, something that is incredibly rare. So I thought she was saying she wanted to sleep in our bed. She was saying mummy’s bed. She snuggled down, and I quickly to screams took her to her cot. She did go to bed, but it took some books and cuddles. Hubby took her up for a few nights and she was fine, climbed in and snuggled down; he was downstairs in minutes. Four nights later I took her, hubby followed, she said she wasn’t climbing in. I gave the same reason as before and she led me straight to our room, climbed into our bed and snuggled down on my pillow. She was happy. She was snug. She looked so comfy. And with that I twigged. She was saying
“look mummy I can climb into a big girl bed”
We felt terrible. This was what she’d been telling us all along. The next day we ordered her new toddler bed on next day delivery.
What bed did we get?
We chose an East Coast toddler bed in white. It has partial sides, looks really well made and the reviews were brilliant too. It’s actually the same make as her cot, so we knew it was a good make and very sturdy.
Making the transition to toddler bed
We did a few things to make sure she knew what would happen:
1. We told her she was getting a big girl bed the next day.
2. We had been planting this seed since August, saying when she was bigger she’d have a big girl bed. Asking her if she wanted one and showing her pictures of toddler beds.
3. We told her her cot would move and she’d have to stay in her new bed all night.
4. We tried to make her excited about it. To be honest she was really excited anyway, talking about it all day, and on the day it arrived.
I think these steps really helped, she knew it was coming and wanted it. Yes, we ended up making that decision to move her really quickly, but it was because of her wanting it.
How did it go?
Easy! Hubby arrived home from work with the bed, and she knew what it was even just seeing the unmarked boxes! She launched herself onto her new mattress ion the living room floor. Snuggling down. Jumping up and down shouting
My new bed!
She helped hubby put it together and then had a bath while he finished off, and I then out her covers on all ready.
She was desperate to get in and after her bath ran to it saying
my bed my bed!
We took her downstairs, put her pyjamas on and watched the nightly You Tube video selection. Suddenly she grabbed my hand and said “mummy take me” and off up we went. We weren’t sure what was going on so hubby snuck up behind us and saw what happened with amazement. She ran to her bed, climbed in, led down and said “night night” – something she’d never ever done. I tucked her duvet around her matress to hopefully stop her falling out too easily, and ran out of the room. We didn’t put on an additional bed guard on (we had one ready in case) as the bed does have partial guards at the top. We then sat glued to the camera watching her. She was asleep in minutes.
One week on…
It’s been a success, the transition from cot to toddler bed was easier than we ever imagined. The same thing has happened every night since, with a couple of rearranging toys, or wanting a book to read herself in bed. Again, things that she had never ever ever done before. She says “night night mummy, sssshhhhhhhhhh” and snuggles up.
She’s comfy, grown up and sleeping well – touch wood!!
I think we’ve been very lucky on this! How did your toddler transition to a toddler bed go? Did you find it easier or harder than expected?