The other day it hit me. I cleaned and went through a bunch of Petit Joel’s things and realized, there is no baby in the house anymore. No high chair, no baby toys, no stroller and no more diapers. I had to buy him new clothes again (he is a four-year-old toddler clothing size 5/6!). It is just weird and so fast how this all happens even though I only have one child that hits all these milestones so quickly. So, a couple of weeks ago my son told me he would love to have a bunk bed. “A bed where I can climb up a couple of stairs and hide underneath a little tent like my friend Jacob has,” he said. So we did the transition to a twin size loft bed. Something like this.
I knew he needs a new bed since he had outgrown his crib. To make other moms hate me I have to add that he never tried to climb out of his crib when he was a baby. He stayed in there until I picked him up. I eventually removed the front part so he was able to get in and out by himself to get to the bathroom but this just did not feel right anymore. Whenever he stretched out he touched the end of the bed.
This kid is literally growing in his sleep, I reckon. So, it was time for the transition from crib to bed. I wanted to wait a little longer to get him a new bed and did a lot of research on which one would be the best. I had a bunch of options and ideas and showed them to him since he has obviously a voice in this process.
Long story short: He fell in love with the IKEA loft/bunk thing so I bought his dream bed while he played at Småland; I only had 45 minutes to get everything done because this is how long the kids were able to stay in that convenient daycare! There were cases in Germany where parents literally dropped their kids off in the morning but never set one foot into IKEA to buy a LETSFICK mattress, a plant or new bed. They simply used the free daycare. Initially funny, but now they have all these damn strict rules.
I loaded this bed into my car and drove home rather uncomfortably. It took me four hours to build this thing; in hindsight, it was okay and fun. The instructions are pretty clear but when a four-year-old is running around trying to “help” it is just not easy. He doesn’t understand what it all means and that he cannot climb the stairs if there are no screws adjusted yet. Overall, the bed transition went really well; no incidents, only one accident (the kid is clean for several months now and I am so proud of him; and myself, ha!) I do not want a trophy or anything but I really think I did a great job raising him so far.
On a different note, the question my father asked was, “How many screws do you have left?” Well, seven but the bed is stable. I spent a rather sleepless night in it; his small body cuddled up next to mine. I have to say that he is the sweetest ever in these difficult past days and weeks since he feels me; we are almost one person. We spent the last four years together, pretty much non-stop. It is so weird because sometimes I think he knows what I need or try to say. The other day he cuddled up next to me on the couch and said, “Everything is going to be okay, mommy!”
And of course, it will be. He is such a good kid who gave me a huge amount of strength when I thought I cannot go on. I did not want to eat but I had to cook because he needs to eat. I did not want to get up but he needed to go to school. I did not want to continue the thesis and thought about throwing it all away but I knew it is the right thing to do for him and me. He showed me that I need to avoid suffering and let go to just play with him and once again I climbed out of this dark hole of self-pity and moved on. The things we are capable of are amazing but only I can realize that potential. The result will be growth and one of the biggest obstacles I have to overcome is myself. A very good friend of mine would say now, “Think about the kids in any slum in South Africa to realize what a problem really is”. The challenges will get tougher but it will all be manageable in the long-run.
What keeps me going these days is that my son shows me what love is and even though I do not want to use the word unconditional anymore, I feel that he in his little world loves me unconditionally. Change is not scary anymore and I enjoy the present since I don’t get the moments back realizing that all the things I asked to receive for so long I can give to myself; especially love. It is inside where I determine if I am happy and decide what to focus on.
All I have to do now is to play with trains and build new tracks and slowly ride along on them.