Wednesday, 10 September 2008

bedside table

Now, to a lot of you, a bedside table may not be such an important or noteworthy thing. Not even the actual table itself, but the fact of having a table. Of having the space for a bedside table.
For about the past almost four years we have shared our bed(room) with one and then two little children. When my son was born of course he slept in our room. First in a little bassinet, then in a cot that was pushed up against our bed. But mainly, really, he slept in our bed. Actually, he spent quite a lot of time sleeping on my chest. Which, really I loved and miss so much.
We managed to move him out of our room, and into his own room before my daughter was born. Mostly he did stay in his room, with times of coming into our bed half way through the night. Yet when Mishi was born Ari wanted to come back into our room. He didn't want to be on his own, with the rest of his family in one big bed together. And I understand. I didn't want him in his own room. I wanted my whole family in with me.
So, that's how it's been for the past 19months. Four in the bed. Ari in his own little kid bed, but pushed up against our bed, so easily rolling and tossing into our bed. And Mishi in our bed too, generally right beside me, generally drinking lots of milk from me a lot of the night.

But there comes a time when you say enough is truly enough. And you need to kick the kids out of your room! Does anyone know where I'm coming from? I so want them to be able to jump into bed with us, but not until at least 7am (or okay, 6am I'll put up with...).

I have lovely memories of sleeping in the bed with my mum and dad, or of climbing into their bed in the morning. Those lovely talks and tickles that a family has before they have to get up and go out into the world. The way, as a kid, you can lie and listen to your mum and dad talking, and be part of that adult world for a few moments. As things talked about in the family bed are precious and true and love and warm. Memories. I hope there are lots of kids out there that have the opportunity to have such warm memories as I have of those moments of my childhood. I hope my own children do.

Yet - I know for my own sanity that I need to have the space for a proper sleep, without kids tossing and turning or kicking or suckling or waking me endlessly. I need to have a decent night's sleep to continue to be a better mother during the day. Finally, I have no guilt at putting them in their own beds, in their own room.
And boy have I liked having our room to ourselves again. Of having the space for a bedside table, With flowers - jasmine flowers have filled our room with the most intoxicating aromas of spring. Of having a lamp, and possibly night time reading - though the reading hasn't quite happened with all the sleepless nights preparing for Red Seed Studio!

And now, with only one bed and a "proper" bedroom set up, I have been making the bed each morning. It feels lovely to see a fresh, neat bed, and not a tumble of sheets and mixed up doonas.

Of course, Mishi still spends many hours in our bed, but slowly I can feel that will ease. They both go fairly happily (mostly) into their own beds. In their own lovely little room, a room for siblings to play and read and make believe and sleep and tell secrets!


  1. You are so wise. I'm so happy for you to find this balance of mothering and recovery at night that is so essential to a whole person. And that bedroom looks like such a harmonic room. That blue is so ... blue!
    Good luck with the red seed studio!

  2. I love having my own room in my bed. But it's also lovely when, in the morning, my two-year-old climbs on top of me, caresses my hair and whispers: I love you mummee.

  3. I'm totally impressed. We've got June in a bed beside ours for roughly half the night.

    I loved reading about your family bed memories. I too enjoy the family love and sleep time.

    I love the colors of your home.


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