It is much harder than I thought it would be. On me, not her.
I really thought I wanted a toddler-free bedroom. No more tiptoeing around in the dark getting ready for bed, no more muffling coughs, sneezes, and curses, no more reading in bed by the woefully inadequate night light...I had thought I would be dying to get her into her own room.
Not so much, as it turns out.
I embarked on Operation SoloNight with much enthusiasm. The 2-week school break seemed like the perfect time to start - in the event of a few bad nights, neither she nor I needed to be up on time to be ready for school.
We tried to prepare Moppet by making the whole thing a fun adventure. I bought some nice, brightly coloured sheets for her bed which caused much excitement. "New-new bed!" She squealed, bouncing up and down on it. We moved the music system into her room, which brought on further paroxysms of delight ("Iss Moppet music!") and burned a CD with all her favourite songs on it to play in the evening before bed time.
We showed her how the new two-way baby monitor worked, and how I could talk to her from another room. She liked that too, and dashed between our room and hers, yelling out to me from her room, "Mama, hullo-hullo?"
The first night in her room, bedtime was one big circus. Both her Papa and I danced with her to her music, and did a little song and dance number with Barney and a few other stuffed toys - a complicated routine which involved hanging them upside down and singing 'LOOK OUT! here comes the PI-der-MAAAN', then throwing them off the bed. Anyway, by the time things wound down to lights off, it was already long past her regular bedtime, and all the excitement and jumping around of the evening had tired her out. I stayed with her until she fell asleep and then slipped out.
My newly toddler-free bedroom had lights blazing, and a grinning husband sprawled on the bed, trying to read 3 books at one go, so happy was he that he would finally get to read himself to sleep again, a lifelong habit that he'd had to give up cold turkey when the extremely light-sleeping Moppet took possession of our bedroom. I grinned back at him, opened and shut a few cupboard doors simply because I could, brushed my teeth with the bathroom door open and more light streaming into the bedroom, hummed loudly as I arranged my pillows, and finally stretched out contentedly on the bed.
It was late, and I was tired, but I found myself lying in bed staring at the little green light on the baby monitor. What was that sound I heard? Were all the settings on the monitor in Moppet's room correct? Was the temperature in her room ok? She would already have kicked her blanket off; she might be feeling cold. Maybe I should go check?
Over the next 3 hours I tossed and turned, convinced myself that the monitor was not working, and made 2 trips to her room, standing with an ear pressed to her door, listening for any sound that would give me an excuse to go in. So it was a perverse relief when she did wake up and her call came loud and clear over the monitor. I rushed into her room, and patted her back to sleep. It barely took a minute or two, but I knew I couldn't go back to my room.
And so it was that at 2 in morning, carrying my pillow and duvet, I tiptoed into her room, and spent the rest of night on the other twin bed there, muffling my sneezes and coughs and feeling my way to the bathroom in the pitch dark.
I slept like a baby, as did my baby.
Moppet has now spent 3 nights in her own room, and seems to be doing well. She still gets up a couple of times in the night, and I usually end up sleeping on the twin bed next to hers for a few hours every night, but she does seem to be sleeping better overall. For one, she no longer gets up at the crack of dawn, but at the far more manageable time of 7.30 am. We have quite a way to go yet, but for 3 days, I think the progress is satisfactory. Mine, I mean.
*Anti-jinx sign courtesy Dotmom