As a Montessori educator, I have always been very intrigued by the Montessori philosophy for infants. Upon arrival of my daughter about a year ago, I was eager to begin to incorporate some of these ideologies, especially a floor bed. I slept on a floor bed as an infant, along with all my siblings, so there was no convincing the grandparents on this one. In fact, my husband and dad had a little bonding session where they built the bed frame together!
If you’re not keen on wood crafts with the in-laws, you could also simply put a crib mattress right on the floor, or purchase a floor bed frame. The idea behind a floor bed stems from allowing your child freedom of movement and independence right from the start. The early granted freedom is also intended to help smooth the eventual transition to a bigger bed (fingers crossed!). When children have the ability to get in and out of their bed all by themselves, there is less dependency on an adult, and transitions to and from sleep can potentially be more easeful.
I was the classic new parent that read ALL the books and decorated the nursery to perfection. I was so prepared and so utterly unprepared for the earth-shattering changes of a newborn.
For the first few months, I was desperate to try anything that might afford a three hour window of sleep for baby… and me! I was nursing around the clock and Amazon Priming anything and everything at 3AM. Talk about sleep deprivation! Meanwhile, the floor bed was collecting dust in the adorable nursery that no one was sleeping in.
It was right around five months that I started to observe some consistent sleep routines in my daughter and I transitioned to “practicing” naps in the floor bed in her own room, and pretty soon after, nights followed.
Intrigued so far? Here are few things to consider:
The most important factor to consider when using a floor bed is baby proofing the entire room, because they will obviously get out of their bed sometimes- but thats the point! Fine tooth comb the room for any hazards. I highly recommend a video monitor with this set up to make sure everything is safe and help ease any anxieties.
I keep her play space in a separate room, so the bedroom is pretty sparse (also a bonus!). Her nursery consists of safely secured furniture, a basket of stuffed animals and board books, and the floor bed.
Instead of viewing her room through the bars of a crib, she’s provided a more pleasing view. I have a low mounted mirror, a handful of artwork hung at her eye level near the bed, and a curtain and mobile overhead.
A floor bed is not going to magically make your child sleep through the night. Trust me, she continues to give me a run for my money nightly. It can however offer babies independence and an opportunity to self-soothe upon going to bed and waking up.
It’s important to do what is best for your baby and your family in the sleep department. This is our floor bed journey, and while it’s far from flawless, I’d definitely do it again.