To say I’m a Sleepyhead advocate is an understatement. It saved our bacon four and a half months ago when Max finally took his first sleep away from our arms, but now I have one question. How the frig do we get him out of it?
The Sleepyhead is a piece of Swedish design which described itself as an award-winning patented complete pod system from 0 to 36 months. It’s a pricey piece of mattress, retailing at John Lewis for £120 for the Sleepyhead Deluxe (the baby size), and for this reason I’d been reluctant to buy one.
But then we brought home baby Max from the hospital and he refused flat out to sleep anywhere, day or night, unless it was face down on someone’s chest. This quickly became exhausting as the saying ‘sleep when baby sleeps’ went flying out of the window and we tried to keep our lids peeled back for hours on end while Max slept, attached to us like a koala baby.
So, ten days into Max’s life, the Sleepyhead Deluxe joined the family.
We used the Sleepyhead around the house for all snoozing or sleeping to begin with before making it a piece of bedtime equipment to help with his differentiation of night and day. Four months later, just as I was thinking about getting him out of the Sleepyhead I took a step in the wrong direction and reluctantly reintroduced it into his morning nap in an effort to help him no off in his own bed, rather than only napping in my arms.
There’s something about this mattress – probably the shape and snugness around his little face and head – that makes our little Sleeping Beauty nod off almost instantly. But as the fairy tales say, all magic comes with a price, and the magic of the Sleepyhead is countered by the fact that we’re now stuck with it and are going to have a grown up son still sleeping in his baby-shaped mattress.
Max is already pretty much bursting out of the Deluxe. We’ve unclipped the bottom so his feet are sticking out of the end, and his shoulders are overflowing the sides, but I really don’t want to fork out £180 for the Sleepyhead Grand, which we can’t really afford anyway, and be in the same situation in another six months. I want to crack this nut and set my baby free.
Whenever I have tried setting him free by laying him down in his Next To Me crib, minus the Sleepyhead, the eyes instantly fly open and he looks up at me with those beautiful big blues as if to ask ‘why are you punishing me Mummy? What have I done wrong?’ Then he’ll proceed to flail about as though to make a point about there being far too much space in that crib for little old him, until I cave and plonk him back in the Sleepyhead and watch him fall asleep before his head’s hit the sodding mattress.
It’s like they line those mattresses with baby crack and I’m the desperate Mother feeding his nightly addiction because I can’t bear to see him sad (or awake).
So how does this work? Go through the pain of going Sleepyhead cold turkey? Is there a way of weaning him out of it? Do we put our sleep and sanity first and treat him to the Sleepyhead Grand (“sorry Max, we didn’t buy you a teepee to play in for your first birthday, we bought you a mattress instead”)?
Please, answers on a postcard to help us stop being slaves to the Sleepyhead.