Co-Sleeping Saves Lives


co sleeping saves lives

Fun fact: I used the beautiful dark cherry crib that was gifted by my mother-in-law as a glorified laundry basket for a good part of Humnoy’s first year. Up until I discovered the amazing secret to more sleep, Humnoy slept in his bassinet because even I succumbed to the fear ads of sleeping with a little baby. Once I ditched the bassinet and just let him sleep with a boob in his mouth in our bed, I (no shit) got more sleep and (no shit again) Humnoy slept through the night after a couple months of co-sleeping. It saved my zombie ass and I no longer resented the poor little human screaming his head off in the middle of the night. I love having my babies close to me for the ease of breastfeeding and saving money and space when sharing a bed. It wasn’t until a dangerous sleep habit unexpectedly occurred that makes co-sleeping more than a lifestyle decision but a possible life-saving one.

Humnoy had been dealing with what the urgent care doctor considered a stomach bug. Think: toddler shit runs, toddler cranky pants, toddler screams, and toddler puke. Poor boy couldn’t keep down any food for an entire day and even threw up water. It was heartbreaking seeing a once skillful and adventurous eater turn down his usual favorite foods and gag at the sight of bacon. A day of a watchful eye was in order but he was normal and energetic albeit dehydrated and had an empty stomach. He thankfully kept down breast milk and went to sleep for the night until a very uncommon and terrifying episode happened in the middle of the night.

I was up per my usual nightly wind-down with my iPhone’s modified brightness keeping me awake while shielded from my sleep mates. I had just taken my midnight shower and relaxing before passing out with my slumbering family. All of a sudden, the room’s silence is interrupted by a gurgle sound coming from my 2-year-old in his side car crib. Humnoy vomited and then gagged on it. He threw up a couple more times but GH was close enough to swoop in and assist our child onto his side. I flash-clicked the bedside lamp and grabbed some towels after scanning my poor baby’s state and his eyes were still closed. He didn’t even stir long enough to fully wake up from an intense night episode. He falls back to his angelic mood but his father and I plan a visit to the doctor in the morning and then we wallow on the “What ifs?” What if he slept alone in his own room down the hall? What if he couldn’t wake up? What if I never brought an infant Humnoy into bed with me?

There are always stories sensationalized by the campaign against co-sleeping like sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) or a drunken parent smothering their child in an unsafe sleep situation. Rare is the news about the immense benefit of co-sleeping when it can prevent possible danger or worse. Even though he barely managed to avoid choking, our ability for an immediate response alone carries as much weight as the many other reasons combined on why we co-sleep. I made myself consider the risks of choking on vomit or swallowing vomit into the lungs as a way to be grateful for lack of personal space or assault by baby appendages. If the sight of sleeping babies wasn’t reason enough (and more sleep, oh my, the sleep), responding to these sleeping babies in a possible dangerous situation makes co-sleeping the safest option for our family. Cosleeping has improved my life in many ways but it also could mean the difference in saving my children’s.

How has co-sleeping helped you?

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18 thoughts on “Co-Sleeping Saves Lives

  1. Totally agree with you on this one! I co-slept with my first daughter for the first two months and my new daughter is turning 2 months and 2 weeks and we still share the same bed. I am dying for a good night sleep – meaning I would love to be able to spread my legs and arms as I please but I feel slightly stressed when she is in her own room. I feel that she is safer right next to me. It is also easier on me as I am still nursing.

    • I hear you on the lack of space; we’ve got two too! I started cosleeping with my second from day one and she (don’t tell anyone) slept through the night since she was 2 months. It’s easier for me to roll over and feed her while we both have our eyes closed for undisturbed sleep if she stirs, which she doesn’t. I just totally jinxed myself, I know.

  2. First off, I giggled a little at the mention of your crib laundry basket, I did the same thing. Second, That sounds so horrifying. Thank goodness you’re a pro co-sleeping mom. One of my good friends is not so co-sleeping friendly, and when she told me about her newborn daughter having a seizure in the middle if the night during a feeding, I had to wonder why she didn’t decide to keep her near every night afterwards! But, to each their own. I love hearing the benefits of co-sleeping, it makes me so glad it came so natural to me.

    • I like your non-judgmental approach with your friend. I try to never preach it because I know it’s do ingrained in se people to want to sleep alone or whatever or they just choose not to, which is fine. I will be the first one to say “try to sleep with your baby” when they wonder how to semi-survive those early days/nights and to succeed at breastfeeding.

  3. I’m here for this. We’ve co-slept basically since she came on. There were a few weeks of the bassinet, but being able to be a lazy, nursing mom ended that. She’s never not slept through the night. Love it and hope it works out with number two. Kicked Papi out for a few months though.

    We don’t even use our side-car. That’s storage for my pregnancy rations (peppermints, pregnancy pillow storage). I imagine she’ll have to transition there before number two, but we’ll see. She’s three. That may be dead.

    My husband is out of town right now for work. First time since Mayah has been born. I usually can’t sleep without him at least in the house, but my little warm bundle knocked me out cold immediately. Yes ma’am. And her having never woken up before 8:30 since she entered the world from cuddles? Plus.

    • I too was worried about Bébé 2’s sleep habits since Humnoy was such an amazing sleeper at a young age. She surprised me the most when I woke up leaking errrrywhere because she slept all night when she was 2 months.

      Cosleeping just rocks. I really don’t see any downside to it. Most people wonder how GH and I have alone time but we sure do. 😉

  4. I can’t tell you how many times my son might have died if he hadn’t been sleeping right next to me. The few times our daughter has puked while asleep that no doubt would have killed her, wouldn’t have been caught in time had she not been right next to me.
    Everyone says we made a bad choice to co-sleep because we “will never get them out of our bed!” . Sorry but I like my babies close. They were with me for 10 months each… that’s not a bond that can be severed instantly after birth.

    • Oh, yes, I’ve heard that one too. I can’t wait until my already awesome sleepers decide on their own to sleep elsewhere and they won’t be 18 either. *Can’t wait* There are just so many reasons to safely cosleep and I never understood why a nursery with a crib made any sense after pregnancy. You’re right, the bond doesn’t stop with birth. It shouldn’t.

  5. I am so glad your little one is alright. I hope he is feeling better. I can’t express how much I appreciate your blog. I’m the first of my local friends to have a little one and the only ‘attachment parent’. I am a firm believer in it but feel alone. It’s hard to find others in the same camp’. If it wasn’t for your blog post on the side car crib, my hubs would be sleeping on the couch while my little guy and I enjoy our queen size bed. 🙂 I am with you that co-sleeping saves lives. We have had really scary moments with our little guy too. Our worst was when he had an allergic reaction to peanut butter and was throwing up while sleeping. I immediately woke up, put him on his side while my hubs grabbed towels. I hope Humnoy is feeling better.

    So, how’s co-sleeping with two little ones?

    • That means so much to me and I am the “attachment parent” in my real-life group. Actually I don’t really have regular friends at this point anyway! Hahaha, my kids are my best friends.

      I’m so happy the sidecar idea works so well. I myself am glad I discovered an alternative for the beautiful (and expensive gifted) crib because Humnoy still gets his independence which just showed up recently while being near us. It’s all a gradual process, much like everything else in AP. 😉

  6. Cosleeping is a gift (saying this as I sit in bed next to my infant son). He snuggles next to me, under me, puts his feet in my face, keeps me up at night, but I love it! It makes me feel closer to him. Plus, he wakes up and starts his fussing, pop goes the boob! He’s back to sleep in a matter of minutes.

    Then I turn over and go to sleep!

    It’s great!

    He has a crib in the room next to ours. It’s such a big crib, and he’s a little peanut. It’s cold and distant. It’s much more homey in here with all of us! My hubby just put him in his crib and I immediately went in and took him out. I want him next to me. I wish I could have all the kids in bed with me. Hubby could sleep on the floor.

    Thanks for the awesome post!

    • Sometimes Dada self-banishes himself to the futon because the kids aren’t sleeping when he wants to, which I’m not going to cry about! My favorite about cosleeping was definitely dream feeding too. It made my sleep so much better because Neither of us had to wake up at all.

  7. This is brilliant! I had always been terrifying of cosleeping before having Meese. I’m not sure why. I’ve never been a heavy sleeper, I don’t drink, and I’ve always slept with one those those crazy heavy body pillows that makes it impossible to roll over without waking up. I remember threatening my husbands life when I woke up to find a 5 day old baby Meese in my bed at 3 am while hubs watched the back of his eyelids. I think it was a week after that that we gave up on the bassinet next to the bed at any point past midnight. I just started putting him in his crib 2 weeks ago because hubs is gone and it makes it easier for me to get a little cleaning done an possibly blow dry my hair. But once it’s time for bed, I bring him to my bed.

    • I remember using the crib as baby jail with Humnoy and it worked perfectly until he became mobile, which was too early anyway. I don’t think I was ever afraid of cosleeping but just wondered why it was so “bad” because it just made sense. Plus, my family co-slept, older siblings and all. It was normal to us.

  8. How scary!! When Ziggy was a newborn and infant he had really horrible reflux. He’d spit up in his sleep, and when he was unable to roll over, it was terrifying. So many nights I woke up to the sounds of him gagging after spitting up. I honestly didn’t sleep much during his first months. I cannot imagine not having him right there next to me.
    Even recently, he has had a couple tummy bugs and woken up in the middle of the night throwing up, sometimes not really waking. It’s so scary, and again, I can’t imagine not having him next to me.

    • Seriously. It’s just so instinctual. It’s just an extension of pregnancy to me. 10 months to then place them near you as possible to the womb. It works because it makes sense.

  9. I totally agree on co-sleeping. Both hubs and I agree that having our babies close to us is waay better than them in the next room. My boys are now 3 and 2, and they are still sleeping with us.

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