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Big Boy Bed Blindeside

2013 September 3
by Becky

Holiday weekends. So much fun but so confusing…what day is it? Tuesday?

We spent most of the weekend with my family—everyone on my mom’s side was here in St. Louis, all of us in one place for the first time since my cousin’s wedding last October. All my cousins, aunts, uncles, and my grandma. Down time chatting, dinners in and out, then a culmination at our house Saturday for a party. The original plan was to gather at nearby Tower Grove Park, but when the temps reached 100+ last week we quickly moved it to the house.

Best decision we’ve ever made.

In the midst of family time I’ve been prepping for surgery, counting down the minutes till I finally get this back issue solved #IhopeIhopeIhope. Prep has included pre-op appointments, medication adjustments, planning for Ethan’s schedule with my parents, and organizing my life to avoid lifting.

Which, quite suddenly, led to this.


We swore Ethan would never leave the “cage” until he was busting through the bars. Even our pediatrician told us not to change a thing till he was climbing out. But after considering a step ladder to assist getting him in and out of bed for the next six weeks of me “being careful” after surgery (so as not to re-herniate my disc), I mildly suggested we try out the conversion kit—something I never thought we’d use, but happened to come with our crib.

Stu, to my surprise, jumped into action making the switch. I really thought this would be a big decision—especially since Stu’s terrified of Ethan getting up in the middle of the night—but we barely had a discussion. It just happened. The side was gone. Ethan no longer has a crib.


I was hit with a sledgehammer of emotion—were we ready for this? I took Ethan up to watch the transformation, he loved his crib and I thought he needed to be a part of this process. I told him he was so big, he was getting too heavy to be lifted into bed. That babies needed to be in cribs because they were so little, but big boys needed to be in beds. And that even though he could, he shouldn’t get out of the bed without calling us first.

“Ok?” I asked after my explanation.
“Sure, ok.” he answered, nodding, a happy look on his face.
“Should we put some sheets and a blanket on your bed? Like a mom and dad’s bed?” I asked.
“No, just sharky.”

Though I was sure this bed morph would change his mind, Ethan is totally unwilling to put anything but his stuffed shark in his bed.



He jumped right on the bed, jumped around, laid down, and rolled around. I tried adding the super cool construction themed sheets I picked up at Target a few months ago, but he wanted NO part. So off they came. The mattress pad and fitted sheet are all he’ll allow.



I thought this was going to have a big build up. Thought we’d fret and worry, consider and reconsider. Thought he’d have to be climbing the sides and falling out for us to finally convert his crib to a bed.

I was on the brink of tears while reading him his books, then he got in bed—I told him again he was not to get out until we get him—I sang songs and walked out as usual. We watched the monitor, expecting him to crawl out and explore, but he wrestled Sharky for a while and promptly fell asleep.

No big thing.

Ok, at the last minute I grabbed my foam roller and stuffed it under the fitted sheet to fill in the opening…I couldn’t help myself. He rolls a lot in his sleep.

I couldn’t help but think of the last time he did a bed upgrade, back in the NICU. At three weeks old, Ethan was finally holding his temperature and was moved out of the isolete and into a crib. He weighed four pounds, eight ounces. So. So. Tiny.

I may be making updates to this post if we have midnight wandering…but fingers crossed he’s gonna stay in the that bed.



14 Responses
  1. Meredith Maglinger permalink
    September 3, 2013

    No midnight wandering?? You lucked out. Lexi was out of her big girl bed 10 seconds after the door closed on the first night.

    • Becky permalink*
      September 4, 2013

      Why does that not surprise me? We got lucky.

  2. Grandma Johnson permalink
    September 3, 2013

    Way to go Ethan!! You now have your very own grown-up bed.

    Grandma Johnson is so proud of you.

    • Becky permalink*
      September 4, 2013

      Ethan says “Thanks!”

  3. September 3, 2013

    Nice. We only had to tell the oldest kiddo one time that she couldn’t get out of bed without calling for us first. She never did. Eventually we had to break her of her extremely good habit by telling her to stop calling for us on Saturday mornings when she had to go to the bathroom and we wanted to sleep in!

    The little one – well, she pushed the envelope a little, but 99% of the time she’s golden.
    Kristin recently posted..two steps forward, one step backMy Profile

    • Becky permalink*
      September 4, 2013

      After reading your stories about getting F to say in her bed, I was extremely worried about this transition. I guess it just depends on the kid! I loved your number system…adorable.

  4. Kristan permalink
    September 3, 2013

    Go Ethan!! I hope he stays in bed for your sake! It took Quinn a few months to figure that one out, but he’s definitely a kid that likes to “test the boundaries!” I bet Ethan will surprise you and sleep right there next to sharkie all night :)

    • Becky permalink*
      September 4, 2013

      Quinn was only 2 when you switched him, so I think he did AMAZING for being so young. Quinn’s always been a little ahead of the game though :)

  5. September 3, 2013

    my son switched to a bed (well a mattress on the floor) for the same reason – I had surgery and I wouldn’t be able to lift him into his crib. He did great with the switch!
    Dara recently posted..Flashback Feature #43–Turtle Back ZooMy Profile

    • Becky permalink*
      September 4, 2013

      it’s kind of nice to have the thinking taken out of the equation, right? When you have to make a decision like this based on pure necessity makes it easier.

  6. Adrianne permalink
    September 3, 2013

    Oh, I absolutely dread the day we switch Cordelia to a big girl bed. We feel the same as you and Stu did. Good job mom and dad and good job Ethan!

    • Becky permalink*
      September 4, 2013

      Well I’m here to tell you it’s not that bad!! But if I were you, I’d keep her in that cage as long as possible. :)

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