When you're a bed sharing mom, you're usually willing to sacrifice any inconvenience for the glory of sweet, sweet sleep, no matter how hard-won. You'll take a couple kicks in the gut, the uncomfortable spot on the mattress, the least amount of pillow, and even give up a blanket. You start to like having this small person in your bed. Soon, you find yourself doing things you'd never thought you would do in the name of sleep. Weird things. Things that are a little, well, yucky. There are some truly gross things every mom does when she's bed sharing, even if most moms aren't necessarily willing to admit it.
The simple joy of being able to shut my eyes and not have to get up out of bed is enough to make it perfectly fine for my son to share my bed with me and my husband. I was so very tired of all the negotiating and leading him back to his own bed time and time again. I had read all of the articles on how to make my child sleep in his own room, and consulted with specialists. I had been traumatized by what we did with our first son, which was to lock him in his room using a special contraption called a "door monkey." It worked, by the way, but the memory of him screaming for us to "let him out" for hours was just too much to fathom doing again.
We are taking the "easy, "our son will sleep with us until college" route this time around, sharing our bed with him from here on out. Sometimes it is a little messy and gross, though. I'm surprised my Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) nature even allows for such things to happen. However, I'm also proud of myself for being able to just roll with this and to go with the flow, no matter how "gross."
She Sleeps With Her Face Pressed To Her Kid's Butt
When you're desperate for sleep, you'll pretty much settle for anything. If sleeping with my face nose-deep in a urine-soaked diaper is what the moment requires, because the alternative (i.e. moving my child a millimeter to the right) might wake up my sleeping babe and result in an hour of negotiating him back to sleep, then I'll take the urine-soaked nightmares. Maybe that's just me.
She'll Layer The Bed In Towels If Her Kid Is Sick And Deal With The Fallout As It Comes
A vomiting kid in the middle of the night is just about one of the worst parts of"parenting life." When you're bed sharing, that means that the vomiting kid is in your bed, so it is about a hundred times worse.
The bed sharing mama protects herself with layer upon layer of towels for the express purpose of being able to shed them one by one throughout the night as the vomit storm erupts. It is one thing to change a kid-sized bed a few times in the middle of the night, but a grown-up sized bed? No way. The bed sharing mama is all about maximizing sleep time. She simply takes the vomit-covered towel and chucks it into the tub to be dealt with in the morning, revealing a fresh towel underneath.
She Looks Forward To The Smell Of Her Kid's Breath In The Morning
You have to get your jollies somewhere when you've given up just about the last bit of sanctuary that was just for you and your partner, and allowed it to be infiltrated by your child. So the bed sharing mama convinces herself that she absolutely loves the sweet, not sour at all, always flower-smelling breath of her child first thing in the morning. Nothing smells purer or more divine than that first whiff of child morning breath, as he or she leans over and mouth-breathes in your face while concentrating on picking a really big booger out of his nose.
She's Perfectly Fine Sleeping On Sour-Smelling Sheets
You guys, you can't expect me to be changing sheets every day, right? When my son was still on the bottle (and I'm talking recent times, as we only got him to stop drinking milk bottles less than three months ago), I'd go to bed catching a whiff of sour milk on my sheets. He would often request bottles in the middle of the night, then fall asleep holding them so of course they would drip all over our sheets.
Occasionally when I smelled the result of those milk droppings I'd be like, "Ew, gross. I should do something about that." Then I'd be like, "Yeah, but it's too late and I'm exhausted, so..." After a while, you can get used to anything, and it becomes the new normal.
She Sweats An Unholy Amount
I don't know about you, but ever since I had kids I think I lose about half a pound of water weight in sweat every night when I sleep. I wake up in the morning drenched in sweat, my pajamas soaked to the point that I like to mime wringing them out before I toss them in the laundry basket. The heat that my body generates at night is exacerbated by the small furnace that sleeps between me and my husband in the shape of my 2-year-old toddler. Most mornings I have to leave my bed unmade so it can simply air out and dry during the day. The humanity of it all!
She Concocts Elaborate Plans About Where To Have Sex
Hey, you've got to keep the romance alive somehow and you're not going to do romance with a sleeping cherub beside you, right? When you're trying to not become a couple for whom all excitement has died, sex is still a pretty important part of a relationship. And if you have a traditional work day where both partners are gone for most of it, and then at the end of the day you're busy with dinner, bath, and bed time, that doesn't leave a lot of room for "love time."
Sadly, you work with what you have. So if that means coming up with a plan on the fly, and that plan involves stealthily getting out of your bed so that you don't wake up your kid and sneaking around the house so that you don't wake up your other kid, well, so be it.
She'll Sleep With A Leaky Boob Hanging Out Of Her Shirt For Easy Access
When I was breastfeeding, "one boob out" was my nighttime "look." At first I wore special shirts that had the fancy hooks you could undo for middle-of-the-night nursing sections. Then, I realized, it was way easier when I was bed sharing and I could just wear a flimsy nothing type bra and leave one boob out the whole night for my child to have at it whenever he wanted. Was it the best night's sleep ever? Nope. Did I have to make a big production out of nursing? No, and I appreciated having to do as little as possible to interrupt my sleep flow.