See this happy kiddo? Want to know why he's so happy?
He's happy because he earned himself a new pet for his bedroom. It's a blue fish, named Blue! And Louis is all sorts of in love with his new water friend.
We'd made an agreement with Louis FOREVER ago that he could get a fish if he would transition fully into his own bedroom. Scoff all you want, roll your eyes even, but Louis had been sharing a bed with us pretty much since day one. It has worked for us. I wouldn't change co-sleeping with him for anything. We had made a couple of moves for him into a crib or his own bed over the years, but he always ended up back with us. He just wasn't ready, and neither were we.
But with his fifth birthday coming up, Bennett and I decided that maybe it was truly time for Louis to sleep on his own. We wanted to create more of a consistency with his bedtime, since he was going to be attending school five days a week. And a schedule for all of us was a necessary thing.
We kept talking to Louis about the transition. We wanted it to be his decision...we didn't want to force him into it and make it feel like we were kicking him out of our room. But we also wanted to create an incentive for him. Two weeks in his own bed would equal a new fish (something he'd been asking for.)
Well...the fish agreement wasn't actually the thing that helped him with his transition. Louis literally decided for himself that, now that he was five, he wanted his own space. Just like that, kiddo started sleeping alone. With a set bedtime. Never getting out of bed ever and never putting up a fight about going to bed. (See what having him decide to do things on his own helps with? Same thing worked for potty training with him too...we never forced it and he never once had problems.)
Anyway, here we were....months later and Louis out of the blue asked us when he was going to get his fish. Oh. Crap. We'd completely forgotten. But he's been so awesome and grown up about everything, we didn't want to go back on our word.
Off we went to the pet store. And we came home with a blue fish, some blue rocks and SpongeBob's house for Blue to live in. Louis wakes up every morning and feeds Blue. It's pretty sweet. And it's also a pretty amazing step in responsibility for him, having to care for something else. (And let me tell you, this beats the ferret that he randomly will ask me for too. Yeah. Never gonna happen, kiddo. Fish it is!!)
Welcome to your new home, Blue.
You're Louis' boy. You're his boy, Blue.