Last night was probably the worst night of sleep I've had in a very long time. And I have no one to blame but myself.
Probably 3 nights out of the week, I fall asleep in Lucas' room while telling him a story or rubbing his back. It's my own fault. I usually am pretty tired by the time he goes to bed at 730 or so. And I just can't help it.
The other night Lucas even laid down the law. He said, "Mommy, I have a rule. You have to stay in my room for a long time. You can't sneak out and go cuddle with daddy." I knew then that this accidental co-sleeping had gone to far.
Anyway, this morning, after consulting various sources, I came up with a plan. It's actually the same plan I've implemeted a couple of times in the past year and a half, but it was time to dust it off and breathe some new life into it.
I told Lucas that we would go to the toystore after school and get him a special toy for bed. We went to 5 Little Monkeys. My only advice to him was to pick something he could cuddle up to in bed. After much deliberation, finally between a weird penguin with vinyl feet and Ice Bat, Ice Bat won!
I said to the saleslady as she rang it up, "We are hoping that this will solve our problem of monsters at night." She assured Lucas that it would. He seemed to believe her. But then about an hour later when we were talking about the Ice Bat at home, Lucas reminded Kevin and I that "He isn't really real. See, his mouth doesn't open." Kevin and I assured him that if a monster was around, his mouth would open wide enough to eat the monster.
I talked about what was going to happen during dinner and then again before we started the whole bedtime routine. Basically, Ice Bat could stay with him, as long as he stayed in his room. Needless to say, it was a tearful farewell. But I reassured him I would be in the next room, on the couch reading my book and that I would peek in on him once he was asleep.
Lucas continued to cry for about 2 minutes. I told him it was too loud and if he kept it up I'd have to read upstairs. He quieted down.
He said he wet his diaper and asked for a new one, so I changed him and tucked him back in. He asked what I was doing. I told him I was trying to read. He asked if he could come out and peek, I told him, yes, really quick and just once. He came out to check up on me and then went back to bed. Then he asked if he could come out of his room when he was a grown-up. I assured him that at that point, it would be fine. He asked if he could have his bear vitamin, vitamin C and fish bubbles (cod liver and fish oil gelcaps, with a pleasant strawberry flavor) when he woke up. I said yes. He then reminded me that I hadn't peeked in on him yet. I reminded him that I was going to do it after he fell asleep. "Okay," he said. Then about 5 minutes later, he fell asleep.
So it's been about an hour now and he's still fast asleep as I type. I hope that I'm not jinxing myself. We shall see.