Wow, I could have written your post about 7 wks ago. My DD is almost 11 months old, and I loved co-sleeping, but after a while, none of us got any sleep, and we were all cranky. We started transitioning DD to her crib by side-carring it to our bed. She got used to sleeping in there, although at first she ended up in our king bed after she woke up at night.
After a couple of weeks or so of this, we put the side back on the crib, but I kept it right next to my side of the bed. Every night was different. Sometimes she'd wake up, and I'd bring her to bed to nurse,and then transfer her back to her crib. Other nights I kept her in bed the rest of the night. We did not rush this, it took time. It was very tiring!
Then we moved the crib away from the bed, but still in our room. I thought we'd keep this arrangement forever, but we still kept waking each other up, Poor DH, he gets up first, very early, and no matter how quiet he tried to be, DD always heard him and woke up. Of course, that woke me up too, so now I was even more tired!
Plus DH snores, and woke DD up in the night too. it was clear we needed to put DD in her own room
I moved the crib to her room about 3.5 weeks ago. I have a futon in there too. When DD woke up at night, I went down the hall, and nursed her in bed (futon). I would transfer her back to the crib, or keep her with me (I was so tired some times I just cheated!). So DH had his kingsize bed and bedroom to himself, while DD and me shared her room!
Gradually DDs nightwakings have diminished. She did have a few days where her teething woke her up 3-4 times at night, boy was I tired!
: Then it went down to 2 night wakings, then 1. Some nights she sleeps all the way through from 8.30pm to 7 am, it just depends. It's a lot better for all of us now that she sleeps in her own room Truly, when she first was in there on her own, I would hear her on the moniter, and would go to her immediately. She really does seem to know that even though I am not in there with her when she first wakes up, that I am easily summoned. Sometimes she would cry, and the second she heard her door open, she would switch to giggling, I would get to her crib, lit by the soft glow of the night-light, to see her sitting up, arms outstretched to me, a big smile on her face! It's hard to be grumpy, even in the middle of the night, when this is what greets you!
So it's clear to me she is secure, and night time is not a scary time for her.
I know she is still real little, and some nights she may need me more than others. She may need me to co-sleep with her in the futon, or she just may need me to get to her as quickly as possible in the middle of the night. Whatever she needs, I'll be there.
To me, Nighttime Parenting is so much more than just co-sleeping. You are right to listen to your child's cues. Good luck in transitioning your DC to a crib, and know you are not alone.