My children are moving into separate bedrooms. It's a milestone, really. And as such, I'm having some conflicted feelings about it.
When we moved into this house, my son was only 6 months old. We created his nursery; we painted the walls green with big leaves on the ceiling. When he turned 2, we got him a mattress. We had to, his baby sister was on the way and she needed the crib. We slapped some flower stickers on the wall to make the room co-gender. When she turned 2, my husband built them bunk beds. He had to, the baby was on her way and the TV room, the third bedroom, became the play room. Now that the baby is 2, she's ready for a bed but there is no other baby on the way. That's it. The youngest will get older and there will be no starting over with any more babies. The crib is obsolete.
My sister in law gave us furniture. Totally great furniture which is serving as a catalyst for all this change. I mean, do you know how great it is to not have to buy furniture? My son gets to keep his room and the girls are moving into the play room which we conveniently painted purple (excuse me, "Berries Galore") when we changed it over from the TV room two years ago. Okay, so I knew this day was coming.
My husband has three sisters. He has been telling me that it will soon be very important for our son to have his own space. I, on the other hand, grew up as an only child and it is very important to me that my children experience a ton of togetherness so they can appreciate the fact that they have each other. I'd like to see them share a room until they are 18, 16 and 14. Okay, so I know that's not going to happen either.
Here are the issues I'm having with the split:
1. No more crib.
I totally cried when it was time to take it down. (You did too - or you will when your time comes.)
2. More gender specifying of toys, decor, etc.
This is kind of hard for me because we have been diligent on teaching the kids that their toys are everyone's toys. And I try really hard to steer clear of using phrases like "that's for boys" or "those are for girls".
3. "Big girl" talk.
As in telling the baby that she has a "big girl" bed now. Why is this an issue? She's LITTLE!
4. My bragging rights are gone.
Okay, I admit it. I took a sense of pride telling people that my three children, one boy and two girls, share a room. They are awesome siblings. The love each other. They can handle the most intimate of sharing because they are so awesome.
5. Increased independence.
When my second daughter was born, we proposed the idea to my then 4-year old son that we make a room for the girls. He adamantly said no. He wanted a triple bunk bed. He said he wanted everyone to sleep in his room, Mama and Papa included. Now, he's totally excited to have his own room. He's got a new desk with drawers in which he can put very important things (Star Wars action figures).
But here's what keeping me from having any more tears about the whole ordeal (I'm telling you; taking down the crib for good is the worst). I overheard my son tell his sister that she can go up into his bed and play whenever she wants. Mmmm...siblings.