I realise what I am about to write will probably be my undoing, I am fairly convinced it will jinx things so much that I will never sleep more than an hour at a time ever, ever again. But here goes.
After 21 months of breastfeeding Pea to sleep, after 21 months of him only sleeping when next to someone, preferably me, preferably with milk, and after not quite 21 months (although it felt a lot like 221 months) of him only napping having fallen asleep on someone’s lap, preferably me, preferably with milk, for the last two nights, Little Pea has gone to sleep without suckling at my breast and by himself, in his own little bed.
For many months we have taken him to bed when he was tired, sometimes as early as his sister, often not until after The Boyfriend and I have had our dinner, and I have cuddled and fed and coaxed him to sleep on his cot mattress on the floor of our bedroom (having given up any attempt at successfully lowering him into his cot while asleep and keeping him that way), The Boyfriend has rocked and cuddled and coaxed him to sleep, and sometimes the whole process could take over an hour. And always the whole staying asleep thing would last a couple of hours. Tops. More like an hour. Or on particularly tough nights, 30 or 40 minutes.
Last night, Pea fell asleep at 6.30. At 9pm I went to bed (I know, living the rock star life or what?) and Pea was still sound asleep. Not until almost 10pm did he stir for milk, after which he assumed his usual sleeping posture in our bed – horizontal with his feet in my neck.
Tonight, he snuggled down after his feed at 6.50 and is still snoozing away as I type this just over two hours later.
It’s not a huge deal, I know babies learn to sleep at different times, just as they all learn to crawl and walk and talk at different times. And I know baby sleep patterns are much more changeable than those of adults. It’s just that evenings spent running up and down stairs to feed an upset and over-tired toddler to sleep, and this is just a starter before the main course of a night of two or three, or on a very bad night six or seven, wakings throughout the night, can start to take their toll. I am sure that new teeth or a cold or yet another ear infection will soon burst this sleepy little bubble, but for now I am enjoying having my evenings (unlike my bed) all to myself.