Toddler Bed Transition

Posted in Toddler by

When my son was 18 months old, he starting climbing out of his crib. He was tentative at first, but then got really good at it. In fact, he and his sister had a really fun game they played. They would climb in really fast, then jump out. Not sure what the actual object of the game was or if there was even a “winner,” but it kept them busy and wore them out.

Every night he would climb out as soon as we put him down. My husband and I got in the habit of sitting in his rocking chair while he would settle in to sleep.

Every morning he would wake up, climb out, and climb the stairs to our room. He’s usually really quiet too so I don’t know he’s awake until he’s in my face.

After 8 months of this, I finally accepted the crib is not keeping him safe, or preventing him from wandering the house. I decided to take the plunge and turned it into a toddler bed (it took less than 2 minutes. Why did I wait so long again?)Crib To BedIt has been a week. The first time I put him down in his new bed, he dozed off holding my face. It was such a sweet moment for me that I will always remember.

I have been clinging for dear life to that sweet moment ever since. Now when I put him down, he gets a mischievous twinkle in his eye.

Even when I stay in the rocking chair, he slides out face first watching me the whole time as if he’s challenging me.Sliding out of bedLook at that face. He knows what he’s doing. 

Once he finally does fall asleep, his body still tends to wander. Turns out, we have a sleep walker. Two nights in a row, I checked the monitor and he was sound asleep on the floor. The first night, I moved him back to his bed. I can be pretty clumsy, so I’m not too surprised that he woke up. The second night, I was going to throw a blanket on him and call it good. Instead, my husband moved him and the boy snoozed right through it.

Then there was my favorite night. On the monitor, he was nowhere to be found in his room. Turns out he was headed our way, but zonked out on the stairs en route. At least he had “Leo the Lion” to protect him,Asleep on the Stairseven though Leo looks scared out of his mind…

I’ve always been an obsessive lock checker, but now that we have a 2 year old sleep walker, it’s been kicked up a notch. Instead of checking the doors once or twice a night, I check three or four times (that’s not counting the times my husband checks too).

We’ve tried putting a baby gate up at his door. It used to make him cry. Now he just hops right over it likes its nothing. We also have a bunch of toys set up in his room in hopes that they would distract him and keep him in one place for awhile. Maybe it works, who knows? He may play for hours before he heads to the stairs. All I know is he is up in my bedroom every morning between 5-6am.

I’m longing for the “early” wake-ups by my girl at 7:30.

Do you have a sleep walker? Have you recently transitioned your toddler to a big kid bed? If you have any tips, please feel free to share!

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21 Comments

  • Reply Lauren

    Both my kids were out of their cribs crazy early. Hudson was happy as a clam in his big boy bed, he slept so much better after we got him in there. Mila just wants whichever bed mommy is in! ha! Sorry I have no tips for you though!

    August 19, 2015 at 7:53 am
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Haha!! My daughter loved her big bed too! My son wants to be where ever I am too, but he also doesn’t want to sleep. If he would sleep with us, that would be no problem! But he refuses!

      August 20, 2015 at 12:23 pm
  • Reply Kristen

    Ooooh I wrote a post on this. The MY TOT CLOCK saved us!! I’ll try to send it to you! http://www.mommyinsports.com/2013/10/bye-bye-crib-hello-bed.html

    August 19, 2015 at 9:03 am
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Thank you! I’ve heard of those before, such a great idea! I’ll have to get one!

      August 20, 2015 at 12:18 pm
  • Reply shann

    With the twins, I have to close their door. There is also a device on the knob, so they can’t open it. Otherwise, they’d be roaming too.

    August 19, 2015 at 11:39 am
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      I’ll have to try one of those knob devices. I have one at my parents’ house…it just might work. Thanks for the tip!!

      August 20, 2015 at 12:17 pm
  • Reply Stephanie

    My 3 year old sleep walks….and talks in his sleep. Some nights it’s pretty comical, but some nights it really freaks me out. HA! We have a one level house, though, I can’t even imagine a sleeping walking toddler trying to tackle stairs. Good luck!!

    August 19, 2015 at 11:55 am
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      I can see that-being comical sometimes, but freaky other times! LOL! Yeah, I’m not a huge fan of the stairs…when we first moved into this house, he got pretty proficient really fast, luckily. Still freaks me out though!

      August 20, 2015 at 12:22 pm
  • Reply Melissa

    That is such a hard stage. My son could hop over the baby gates too. I him a giant car bed and batman sheets. He still wanders into my room at night but at least he goes back to sleep. I had to get one of those door chains up high because I was scared he was going to get outside.

    August 19, 2015 at 3:34 pm
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      I’ve been thinking about getting a door chain-Its such a scary thought that he might get outside! It would definitely help with my peace of mind.

      August 20, 2015 at 12:20 pm
  • Reply Alana

    First of all, him sliding head first made me laugh so hard!!! Both the description and the photo are HILARIOUS! Sorry, I know this probably isn’t a laughing matter in your household but, seriously, in a few years you can pull it out again and laugh, I’m sure. My daughter has had two night terrors but no sleep walking. I don’t blame you for quadruple checking your locks. Hope you find a way to tether him down, I mean keep him in his bed. I wish I could be of help. Hope he gives you an easier time ASAP!

    August 19, 2015 at 5:23 pm
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Haha!The main reason I wrote the post was to share the funny pictures. He’s so silly and he knows it! Now if I can just get him to sleep past 4…the last few days have been brutal. No clue whats going on with him…2 year molars?…I feel like I’m back in the fog of having an infant.

      August 20, 2015 at 12:16 pm
  • Reply Chanity

    My daughter is 2 and she’s yet to climb out of her crib! I know I need to put her in a big girl bed.. But I also feel like why mess with a good thing? A 12 hour straight-sleeping good thing?! Lol!

    August 19, 2015 at 7:25 pm
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Definitely don’t mess with a good thing!! My daughter was the same as yours. The only reason we moved her out of her crib at 2 1/2 was because her baby brother was ready for the crib. Luckily, she continued to be a good sleeper.

      August 20, 2015 at 12:14 pm
  • Reply Jenny

    He is such a cutie, I am sure that saves him when he is running around in the middle of the night. 🙂 Z never had a problem staying in her own bed, well after she was 2 that is. She always slept with us until then. It was probably that she couldn’t wait to be away from us haha

    August 20, 2015 at 8:15 am
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Thanks…it helps. Plus, he’s really sweet. After waking me up before 4 two days in a row, he’s lucky he’s so adorable and sweet. I feel like we have an infant again.

      August 20, 2015 at 12:13 pm
  • Reply Amy @ Magic Moments Preschool

    Ahh the bed transition is so hard!! This post made me laugh as I can totally relate. Cute pics! I have a crazy two year old who we transitioned and had to go back to the crib because he would not stop getting out of bed. Best of luck to you!!

    August 20, 2015 at 8:31 pm
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Thank you! I’m very close to turning it back into a crib-and I would have by now if I thought it would keep him in bed. But alas, it won’t. Its been some early wake-ups all week long!…

      August 21, 2015 at 12:02 pm
      • Reply Amy @ Magic Moments Preschool

        Yea mine was not climbing out, not sure why he has not tried that yet. This is one of those times that are so hard that not many people post about, so thanks again and I hope it gets better soon.

        August 21, 2015 at 1:31 pm
  • Reply Joy

    A fellow (former) Seattlelite! This story is hilarious! Hopefully the rain will deter him from going outside the house in his sleep huh? Lol!

    But in all seriousness, sleepwalking is pretty normal at the childhood stage. Once they hit adolescence, it should subside. If they do not, then it’s pretty important to see a doctor. In the meantime, other than just the locks, try to make the house as injury-proof as possible so your son doesn’t get hurt wandering around! Good luck with everything!

    August 31, 2015 at 2:36 pm
    • Reply mamabyfire@gmail.com

      Thank you for the great advice! I think it’s fairly injury-proof, or at least the things he’s interested are. Usually when he wanders around, he’s awake. I’m hoping the picture on the stairs was just a one time thing…

      August 31, 2015 at 3:09 pm

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