by Jeanne Sager
When I was pregnant, my to-do list was long. At the top: get the baby's room ready. Because every baby must have a nursery, right?
Weeeeeeeell, actually, there's pretty much nothing to prove that babies need their own room. In fact, I'm going to go out on a limb and say the thing that will make the manufacturers of all that baby STUFF cringe in fear.
A baby does not need his (or her!) own room.
You can park your kid's crib in a closet (a well-ventilated closet of course!), and no one will be the worse for wear. Or, heck, you could even room in with your baby until they're no longer technically a baby. Thousands of parents do it every year, and it works out just fine for them.
I realize that this sounds a wee bit hypocritical considering I just admitted that the baby nursery was my biggest "to-do" when I was pregnant. But this is the benefit of hind-sight: you are embarrassed by what an idiot you once were!
My daughter is now 8, and I realize that she didn't spend a whole heckuva lot of time in her room when she was a baby. She slept in the same room as my husband and I for quite some time, and then later used "her" room solely for naps and bedtime.
She was too little to sit on the floor and play with toys alone; she did all of that in the living room. We probably used the changing table in there all of a handful of times (because the floor, the couch, my bed, etc. were all so much more convenient). And considering the sheer amount of laundry I did at that point in her life, most of her clothes spent most of their time in a basket rather than her dresser.
Oh, and all that cutesy nursery decor? It's already gone because while it was adorable, it was really my taste, not hers. By the time she was old enough to care about decor, she wanted things her way!
I hate to admit this, but looking back on the nursery we created, I feel like a rube. We wasted so much time! Not to mention money!
And for what? So we could say we had a baby nursery?
It's a great bedroom for her now that she's a little girl, but looking back, I realize I could have saved myself plenty of time, money, and worrying about getting the baby's room done if I'd just faced the truth: babies don't need their own rooms.
Do you agree? Do you think a baby needs his or her own room?