After talking about it for months, we finally moved Suzi to her own room a few weeks ago. (These pictures are from the end of January, when we first showed her the new setup.) The room was already a playroom, as I organized it during my pregnancy with Ivey. All we had to do was swap the coloring table for her little bed and tack the bookshelf to the wall for safety. Then we put the table in our craft/catch-all room, straightened up a bit, and we were done. She was excited about the move; we wouldn't have done it otherwise. I was perfectly satisfied with having her in our room, because her sleeping habits were fine. She wasn't needy or overly dependent the way some people think children who are parented this way are. It's a myth.
The first experience in her new room was an afternoon nap, but I'm not sure she slept at all. The "nap" ended when she yelled for Daddy. He went up to see what was wrong and she was trying to reach a book that had fallen behind her bed. Jordan said that if she hadn't dropped the book (which she pulled off the bookshelf behind her) she'd have been up there reading in bed. Kind of cute to think about! Jordan used to read in bed when he was supposed to be sleeping, and so his parents wouldn't hear him switch the lamp off he'd unscrew the bulb instead.
The first night, Jordan tried to put Suzi to bed as usual, but it wasn't going well. When I heard her crying I offered to go talk to her. It took an extra bedtime story, another doll ("Rosie," her Raggedy Ann made by Grandma), lots of hugs, and just the right setup of night-lights to appease her. She has a Twilight Turtle, a stuffed turtle that projects stars onto the walls and ceiling, but it has to be really dark to see them. The darkness made her a little nervous, so she told me to put her Betty Butterfly and big tiger up against the bed (to stand guard).
I was a little nervous at first. Now that it's been a few weeks, I am okay with it. Jordan and I are just a step or two down the hall from her. She does call for us a lot more often now, and we do have a more intricate nighttime routine, which includes but is not limited to getting her tissue (in case her nose runs), making a potty run, brushing her teeth, getting the three or four stuffed animals/toys she requests, turning her stars on (the Twilight Turtle), letting her kiss and hug all three of us at least once, and always, always reading "In the Night Kitchen." We must read this book or the evening can't continue. And she has it memorized.
In a couple of years it'll be Ivey moving into that room, but she'll be moving in with her big sister. Suzi's little arms will comfort her when she's afraid of the dark. We'll probably get them a double bed, maybe even bunk beds with a double bed on the bottom once they're old enough. They can cuddle and play and laugh and share clothes and argue and do all the other things I'd imagine sisters do when they share a room.
It's going to be beautiful. It already is beautiful.