To minimize the searchability of this by two names together, just in case, I’m changing my ex’s name here to just simply A.
It took me a little while to figure it out. I was feeling moody, distant, irritated, and generally down. Not exactly how I expected to feel. Dad and Janice are here, that should (and does) help me to be in a good mood. Cameron was being super charming and sweet, playing happily with Janice. We were at Ikea, which usually also has a good effect on my mood.
But I just felt so down while looking at big boy beds. None were right. Too wide. Too narrow. Too cutesy. Too flimsy (what did I expect, after all, we were at Ikea…). The mattresses were all awful. I tried to engage with Cameron, but just felt distracted and blah.
So I did my usual ‘thing’ when something is irrationally bothering me. I talk at myself, puzzle it out.
“So what’s bothering you, Melo?”
“I’m tired. It was a long day at work. Leave me alone.”
“Yeah. Right. It’s always a long day at work and today wasn’t that bad. What’s bugging you.”
“Cameron’s growing older. I love that, but he’s not a baby anymore, and at this rate I might not have another baby. Ever. Ever.”
“Okay, the old fall-back, wanting another baby. Yeah yeah. Quit trying to lie to yourself, you’re no good at it. Tell yer hormones to shut up and let’s dig deeper.”
You get the idea. Eventually I came to realize that I was brooding over the last time I went bed shopping. Crib shopping, actually. And the time before that.
The issue of where the baby would sleep was a big one between me and A. Big. Involving many fights. First, I found out that I could have a crib for free, through a friend. No way, said A. He was furious, put me down for being concerned then about something that wouldn’t be needed for months and months. “Four months, actually,” I said, and was promptly and curtly told that babies shouldn’t sleep in cribs. It was cruel.
Four months later, his parents said they wanted to buy a crib for the baby, who was at that point scheduled to arrive in a few days. The day before, finally, I got A to go crib shopping. No way. He would go for a pack n play style thing, that was it. We fought over it, but we’d already had a big fight that day, so I relented. Fine. Just something safe for the baby to sleep in.
Cameron arrived. And A insisted that cosleeping was right, was the only way. For some families I know it works, but I was having a very hard time with it. I just couldn’t sleep. I’d be lying there sobbing, trying to sleep, but I couldn’t because every time I tried, Cameron did something that kept me awake. Like breathing. My mommy alertness was on hyperdrive and wouldn’t let up. So Cameron would spend some of the night in his PnP, some with me, some in his carseat next to me, some in his swing.
Finally, I flat-out insisted. I was getting Cameron a crib. The pack and play was horrid. He was too heavy for the suspended-bed part, and getting too heavy for me to lift in and out thirty times a night. I was getting a crib whether A agreed or not, and it would be in Cameron’s own room so I could sleep. We fought, and argued, and wandered stores in stony silence. Not your normal family going crib shopping to say the least. The long silences were because of one thing. I knew it was over, knew it in my heart, knew it in my whole body, but just didn’t know how to get it out.
I ended our relationship that night.
The next night, A picked up the crib, brought it over, assembled it, and left.
I’m not upset because going bed shopping reminded me of ending things. That was a relief, a good thing, not something to be upset about. But I’m feeling growly at the memories of crib shopping, at trying to figure out why on earth A was so negative about buying a crib (or even being given one), and even just the act of looking at beds sort of put me back in that emotional moment.
And having written all this out, I feel better.
I did eventually pick a bed. At the time, I wasn’t happy about the choices, but now I know it’s a good one. The mattress? Sure, it might be a little on the thin side, but I’m not sleeping on it. Cameron is. And he weighs far less than me, so needs less padding. He has a duvet with a bright pattern on it, and sheets. Also many big thanks to Dad and Janice, who decided to buy the whole thing as a gift to Cameron. It was way too late by the time we got home to assemble it, so that might be a project for tomorrow.