Thursday, November 20, 2008

On Co-sleeping

When Primo and Secondo were newborns, we only had one crib. The boys slept in it together, and we thought that would last a while.

Then Secondo started scooting around on his back in his sleep. Just a little, at first. But when thee boys were eight weeks old I woke up one morning to Primo's cries, went to check on them, and realized the reason he was crying was because Secondo had scooched over was kicking him in the head. Obviously, that could not continue. Not so much because I felt bad that Secondo was beating up on his brother, but more because when you have newborn twins, anything that interrupts their (and your) sleep is a very, very bad thing.

P did some hunting around on Craigslist and came home with a beautiful Pali crib a few days later. I was so happy I could have kissed his feet. We separated the boys as soon as we could put the crib together. But it made me sad that we had to do it so early. What about that twin bond? What about being so close together in the womb? Weren't they supposed to feel comforted by each other's presence? Obviously not, because they didn't seem to care and they definitely slept much better. So did we.

When they turned two, though, Secondo decided he wanted to be with his brother in his crib. Even though he could be completely oblivious to Primo's presence all day, he whined and cried until we put him in there--and then Primo whined and cried, because though Secondo doesn't kick him in the head anymore, he loves to stomp on him and sit on him, and there really isn't enough room for two hefty toddlers in one crib.

When it was time to move them out of their cribs and into big boy beds, the choice was obvious: We moved them into my old queen-size futon. Partly because it was already in their room. Partly due to space considerations in our tiny condo. But mostly so they could be together. It's worked out beautifully--it's big enough so that they rarely fall out (and it's close to the ground when they do), and it's the perfect spot for reading bedtime stories. And even when they start out at opposite ends of the bed, they always end up moving towards each other. One's head will be nestled on the other's shoulder, or they'll hold hands. Tonight they are in the shape of a T, with both of Secondo's legs resting comfortably on Primo's belly.

I know this will end eventually, too, and when they're old enough, we'll move them into bunk beds. But I'm enjoying this while it lasts. And if I'd known how much they would enjoy sleeping in the same bed as toddlers, I might not have felt so wistful when they were eight weeks old.


Christine said...

My boys, six and almost four, sleep together in a queen size bed, too. I LOVE watching them sleep together like a couple of little puppies. And the best part is that if one of them wakes in the night I can lay down with them for a bit without killing myself :-)

Keen said...


I'm amazed more parents don't do this. It's definitely getting us past that awkward toddler bed phase. And I also sleep in there every so's so comfortable that I've even been know to nod off in the middle of a story. That doesn't go over so well, either.

KAL said...

I think this is the cutest thing ever and wish that my boys would do that!