Sometimes being a parent feels like one transition after another. Breastfeeding-to bottle-to cup. Crib-to-bed. Paci-to-no paci. Diapers-to-undies. I see parents freaking out over each and every transition. I see it in the mom groups on Facebook. I see the countless articles, "Five Steps to Ditch the Bottle" or "Ten Steps to Potty Training Success."
But my favorite piece of advice for all these transitions has always been, "Just go for it." Parents often spend more time worrying over the transition than is necessary. They lose sleep and have heart palpitations anticipating the change, and then when the time finally comes, it ends up being no big deal at all.
I can say from my own parenting experience, it's usually best to deliberate less, and just go for it.
I remember when it came time to transition my son out of his crib. He was only 14 months old at the time but I was already four months pregnant with his baby sister and he was fighting that crib with everything he had. My husband and I knew we had to make a change. Even though I knew he was ready to get a "big boy bed" I still felt nervous. I asked countless other mothers how they had made the transition. I wondered if he would be upset or how we would keep him contained. I actually delayed the night of the big switch several times before finally accepting that the time had come. That night we showed him his new bed and he was grinning from ear to ear. He ended up really loving his bed and his sleep greatly improved. I could have skipped all the drama in my head and saved myself a lot of anxiety had I just gone for it.
Don't get me wrong—there will be times when you will need to employ special strategies to keep your toddler in his new toddler bed. Or a plan-of-attack to get your kid to give up the paci. There may be times when you need to seek special advice—after all, no one knows your child the way you do. But I can say from my own parenting experience, it's usually best to deliberate less, and just go for it. You'll probably be pleasantly surprised at how smoothly the transition goes.