CO-SLEEPING MOMMIES: I AM JUDGING YOU.

I judge moms who co-sleep. I am just going to say that right off the bat. It's plain and simple. How could you be so careless? There is such a high risk of harming your baby by co-sleeping so how could you possibly continue this terrible practice? It's reckless and is just straight bad-parenting.

Now that may sound a bit harsh, but I really just never understood it. Out of all of the studies and the warnings, and so many families continue. And I just can't wrap my head around it

And I've always judged these moms real hard...

...until Friday morning.

Ava is currently going through her third leap in her brain development and along with that, comes more crying, wanting more physical contact, and fussiness. Now if you know Ava, she is probably the happiest baby you've ever met and so even the slightest bit of fussiness is pretty out of the ordinary.

A couple of days ago, she started not wanting to go down for naps during the day and then not wanting to go to bed at her 7:00pm bed time. Well along with this lack of sleep, of course, came the crying. Crying out of exhaustion. You'd think babies would get the hint that they're tired and would just fall asleep. But no, she just cried even more because she was tired, which made her even more tired, which made her cry even more...and the cycle just went around and around. That isn't the norm with her but two nights ago the cycle was at it's prime.

And Frank and I were exhausted.

Let's step back a minute - Before I had Ava, I was the kind of girl who went to sleep at 9:00pm just because I was tired. And although I am already used to going to sleep in the 11 o'clock hour these days and waking up before the sun, being up until 2:00am just wasn't something my body (or brain) really liked.

So back to Thursday night...I just couldn't keep my eyes open. And Frank was exhausted with work in just a couple of hours. Ava wouldn't eat, wouldn't suck, and just couldn't fall asleep. We finally got her to use my boob as a pacifier and as she began slowly but surely calming down, Frank and I both dozed off and fell sound asleep. We were out for the count.

Like I said before, we are very against co-sleeping in our house. The risks of our comforter ending up covering her face or one of us bumping her with an elbow or worse, rolling over onto her as we're sound asleep just don't outweigh the benefits. And we always talk about how we don't understand how so many families co-sleep with their newborns every single night. Aren't they scared to death of hurting their little one while they are fast asleep? We've never been able to wrap our heads around it.

...until Friday morning.

My internal clock woke me up at 5:30am because that is when Ava wakes up. And she was fast asleep, right there between us. 6:30am rolled around and I double and triple checked to make sure she was okay. Yep, she's still sound asleep -- nice and peaceful. And then another hour passed and my boobs were getting a bit sore from all of that milk. They're used to pumping AND feeding her every morning so they weren't too happy with us.

the risks and benefits of co-sleeping with baby

And so, I decided to wake her up at 7:30am. Ava slept until 7:30am peacefully and fell right back asleep after that for another couple of hours. Yes, she is used to going to sleep earlier so that is part of the reason she was so tired and slept so soundly but I can now say that I totally get it.

I get why moms co-sleep.

I continued to judge all of the parents who co-slept and didn't understand why they could be so careless. But I get it now. She slept so peacefully and I absolutely loved waking up next to my little beauty. And from this, I am reminded to not judge other moms for their parenting decisions because what is right for them, may not be right for me and my family. I am always preaching to not judge other moms, and there I was doing the same. But I totally get it now.

While we will continue to put Ava in her crib every single night and still don't like the idea of co-sleeping because of all of the risks, I have definitely learned a lesson about how harsh we can be on other mommies....even when we are mommies ourselves. So sorry to all of the co-sleeping mommies that I was silently judging. I learned my lesson, and I get it now. I got to wake up to the most beautiful baby girl in the whole world with the biggest smile on her darling face. And just that, made my one night of co-sleeping all worth it.