Is this really happening? We just arranged the boys' room so that Amani can sleep in the bottom bunk... in a big boy bed! Oh my stars... this just can't be so!
This is my third go-round of transitioning a child from a crib to a bed. And I have the same emotions every time. Excited for my child... I love seeing them get all excited about a new milestone. But sad at the same time. It is hard for me to let go of the baby days. Especially hard with my third child, since we missed more than his entire first year of baby days.
I imagine we'll take the transition as slowly as necessary for Amani. I still treat transitions more carefully with him, since he's only been home a little over a year and I want all changes to be as positive as possible for him.
That being said, we've been talking about the big boy bed ever since the night I found him hanging over the edge of his crib, clinging for dear life! I seriously have no idea how he got himself into the position he was in. If it weren't so dangerous, I'd have him reenact it so I could take a picture! :) Maybe I can get Riley to do it for me later.
So the bed is set up but the crib's still there in case he decides he'd rather sleep there instead. Amani sleeps with EVERYTHING he owns. He's like a baby hoarder. Seriously. In addition to his two special lovies (who go with us everywhere), he had probably 10 stuffed animals, three blankets, some little pillows, and a slipper in his crib when we set up his bed. And we took out each item together and decided if it could go on the shelf or if it had to go in his new bed. Only the slipper didn't make it onto the big boy bed. :)
I'm no expert, but I think giving him as much control as possible during these transition times is important. I did it with my first two and it helped them immensely and they didn't have any attachment issues. I think we'll weather this "storm" of change quite well, actually.
And that is a wonderful feeling. So different from our first year "storm" of changes.
As I watch him undertake this next challenge, my heart saddens a little bit. I mourn the time I didn't get to be with him, all the milestones I missed. If his birthday is correct (which I'm 99% certain it's not, but that's another story), there were 413 days of his life when our family was not there. Every time he hits a milestone, those 413 days hit me in the stomach. I am reminded of how much I missed. And as soon as I think about how much I missed, I think about his birth mother and how certain I am that she would love to see how well he's doing now. I grieve for her, this mother who is missing milestones too.
But I get to choose. I can focus on those things (and I'll admit, sometimes I do) AND I can rejoice that not only do I get to celebrate the rest of his milestones with him, but that he's doing so amazingly well. I am so grateful for the days he has been with us!! Grateful for the journey; for how much God has taught me about love.
And just as a side note, I've been rejoicing a lot around here over adoption in general. Before we left our old church, I had prayed and prayed that God would touch people's hearts to adopt. And (I thought) nothing happened. I just got an email and there are now three or four families that are adopting at our old church! I am so excited! There will be more children in forever families! It's hard for me not to just go ahead & start the process again, but I really want to give Amani some more time to firmly plant himself in the family before I shake things up again! :)