Co-sleeping can be so magical. You get to snuggle with baby at all hours of the night and morning, watch them quietly sleep, and be nearby for late-night feedings and early-morning diaper changes. But, have you ever wondered what thoughts your baby has about your partner when co-sleeping with you? After all, if you do have a parenting partner to share the child-rearing load with, you (probably, unless the living room couch is consistently occupied) aren't the only one in bed with baby.
Now that my kids are older, it seems like our co-sleeping days are few and far between. We still have the occasional midnight visitor staring down at us creepily or kicking us out of bed, and in a few months we'll have another baby to snuggle (which, you know, I can't wait). I can still remember fondly the countless nights made easier by having my babies close when they needed me and when I needed re-assurance that they were still breathing.
My husband remembers co-sleeping with his babies entirely differently, however. Maybe it was because I was my babies' lovey, while he was just "the other person" in a sleepy love triangle of late-night feedings, weird smells, and crotch punches. So, clearly my baby had some thoughts, and I have a feeling they were something like this:
"Back Off, She's Mine"
It's not that I'm jealous of you. I'm not, because I know she likes you (at least a little bit, anyways. However, all I have to do is cry for a second and she'll come running. Face it, you can't compete with me because I am cuter than you. Back off. She's mine.
"Shh. I'm Trying To Sleep."
What's that noise? It's so loud. It sounds like a bear or an airplane or a tiger. Mommy, wake up, wake up, wake up. There's a monster in here. I'm so scared.
Oh. It's you. Of course it's you. You ruin everything. Can you please keep it down? Mommy and I are trying to sleep over here.
"I'm Gonna Get Your Nose"
I'm going to get your nose this time, and I'm not ever giving it back. Ever. Now who's laughing? It isn't so funny when it's your nose that's missing, is it? That'll teach you to pick on a baby.
"I'm Gonna Kick You, Just To See What Happens"
I wonder if I can make my body as wide as the whole bed. Oh look, I can reach your face with my toes. I wonder if can reach your kidneys from here.
Now, I'm gonna kick you and see what happens. Maybe it'll make you stop snoring. Or even better, you'll go somewhere else and leave mommy and me alone.
"I'm Crowded. Roll Over."
Three in the bed and the little one said, "I'm crowded, roll over." If you don't give us some room, I'm going to kick you again. If you want me to sleep, I need more room.
"Oh Look, You're Asleep. Well, Not For Long."
How can you sleep? With all the noise and mommy's boobs so close by. It's so distracting. Now that I mention it, I am feeling a little bit hungry. Plus my diaper is wet and it's pretty uncomfortable.
Maybe If I pretend that I'm in a warm bath, I can go back to sleep. Nope.
"What's That Smell?"
OMG you smell so bad. How can mom sleep through this? I can't believe you think I smell bad. It's like my diaper after I tried blueberries, but worse.
I just can't stand it any more. I just can't. Maybe mom can change your diaper and make it better. I'm going to wake her up and find out.
"You Don't Need A Blanket, Do You?"
That blankie looks so snuggly. It's so warm, soft, and smells like just like mommy. Can I have it? I'm just going to pull this corner over me and mom. Ooh, that's the ticket.
Now, we're so warm and cozy. Yawn. Oh, did I wake you up? Are you cold or something? You could always sleep on the couch. I've heard it's nice out there.
"Why Are You Touching Mommy's Boobs?"
It's so nice to be asleep, cozy and warm next to mom Wait a minute. I'm not next to mom anymore. I am in the crib. Why are you touching my mom's boobs? That's my dinner, not yours. Can't you see I'm right here. I'm going to cry now and get mom's attention.
Works every time.
I wonder how long she'll stay asleep if I stare at her. I am going to sit right here, staring down at you until you wake up and notice me. Poke. Poke. Poke. Are you still sleeping? I'm so bored. Look at me.
"Do You Want To Snuggle With Me?"
Mom is a fantastic at snuggling, don't get me wrong, but so are you. Mommy's getting some rest right now, so I don't want to bug her but I really need a hug. You give the best hugs. You don't even mind when I scrape your legs with my ice cube-like, sharp-clawed toes or when I accidentally kick you in the face.
I love you so much. Can we snuggle? Over on your side? If you could just roll over a little, that would be great.