Dear Exhausted Parents of Restless Children,
If you are finally ready to change the balance of energy in your home, then this could be the most important message you've ever read. And because of that, we highly recommend you read this entire letter so you understand everything that has been happening with all the kids who've tried our amazing beds.
After seeing results with autistic and schizophrenic children by customizing their sleep environments, we feel that zPods are sensory friendly safe spaces for all children to find more calm, comfort, and most of all, sleep.
Learn how Natalie went from sleeping in her closet to sleeping 11 hours a night in her new bed. And, her mom no longer has to check on her.
***Note: make sure you don't miss our follow up interviews with Natalie and her mother further down this page... so amazing! ❤
Before getting her zPods Bed, Natalie was sleeping in her closet and constantly waking up scared.
Natalie had been diagnosed with autism and schizophrenia. When Natalie would feel scared she would start ringing her private doorbell for her mom, Leah. She would then come and comfort Natalie throughout the night.
Leah felt very open to the idea of seeing if there was anything that could help Natalie find better sleep and a more comfortable safe space.
Not to mention, maybe Leah could find a better night of sleep as she was exhausted as well.
Learn how Dawson went from sleeping only 2 hours per night to now as much as 12 hours after getting his new safe haven!
At a very young age, Dawson had been diagnosed with Child Onset Schizophrenia, Dissociative Identity Disorder, and Autism Spectrum Unspecified.
He was only sleeping 2 hours per night for almost the entirety of his life.
Most nights he would be completely awake and his parents had to spend a lot of time being there for him and making sure he was comfortable.
In order for Dawson to get any amount of rest, he was using up to 4 sleep medications on most occasions.
He would fall asleep in school, couldn't really show affection to his mother, father, or his siblings, and, was often hallucinating.
As you can imagine, his parents were exhausting all options as his behavior was becoming very challenging around the family; especially as he was exhibiting a lot of emotions of anger and discontent.
Sometimes even slamming plates at the dinner table.
Or, sometimes he would just be emotionless as he was so exhausted.
It was actually getting to the point where there was consideration of having him committed to a residential institution to seek additional help and support.
Well, we have some interesting news. So many amazing things have happened since getting his new bed and starting his zPods adventure!
Dawson is now sleeping 8 hours per night, consistently, and sometimes as much as 12 hours per night!
And, his parents have gone from sleeping 4 hours per night to 8 hours per night.
Dawson has also decreased his sleeping medication from 4 per night to now only 1 per night!
And, his mother has completely gotten off her anti-depressants as she is now way more rested than she's been in years.
Dawson is doing much better in school and is no longer considered intellectually disabled and, is not falling asleep in school anymore.
He is also connecting so much better with his peers, brother, and his parents.
Him and his father are now discovering a new found connection and often find themselves playing much more and laughing hysterically.
He says things to his mother all the time now like,
"I love you. I miss you."
It literally brings tears of joy to her eyes whenever she talks about it.
Learn how Ethan is no longer sleeping in his parent's bed as he found his new sensory friendly safe space.
As all of us exhausted parents can imagine...
...it's been one heck of a journey on finding proper rest in the household. We talk about the household because we know that when kids don't sleep well, 'we' as parents don't sleep well.
In the old days, it use to be mostly adults that struggled with sleep; whereas the children would sleep like babies, hence the term, 'sleep like a baby.'
However, the world is changing and children are no longer sleeping like babies.
The American Academy of Family Physicians are saying that up to 50% of children will experience some sort of sleep challenge.
If this statistic rings true, then it's likely that parents are going to have issues sleeping. Especially, if their children are having difficulty.
Not to mention if the children can sleep better then their parents can find more alone time to laugh, relax, and not be as overwhelmed.
Listen to our President, George Bailey explain zPods and talking about his son, Joseph, who has Autism and gets wired at night.
Through George's experiences as a parent of children with autism and sitting on the board of Autism Speaks St. Louis, he has developed a strong belief that...
"If we can help children that don't sleep well, we can change the lives of not just children, but the entire family."
As George understands the challenges his children face, he became in love with zPods as they can provide a sensory friendly safe space when he saw his son interact with this bed for the first time.
Now, let’s talk a little bit more about George's son, Joseph.
Joseph is 12 years old and has autism, a chronic sleep disorder, and a sensory processing disorder.
Much to George’s concern, Joseph often dances around his room late at night, waving plastic utensils to calm himself (stimming).
Finally, George connected the dots and thought about introducing Joseph to zPods because of its unique ability to create a comfortable and secure sleeping safe space.
George will never forget the first thing he noticed when Joseph saw our zPods.
As Joseph (a.k.a. 'Joe Joe') sat peacefully in the zPod George noticed that he was no longer stimming.
Some of you might be thinking,
“Okay, what is stimming?”
Stimming has been interpreted as a protective response to overstimulation that can be seen in children with autism.
Many people use stimming to block less predictable environmental stimuli to which they may have a heightened sensitivity.
Watch how ‘Joe Joe’ started stimming less when trying his new sensory friendly safe space.
After observing 'Joe Joe', George felt an emotion that he never thought he would feel. Something that every parent wants to feel when they see their children finding peace, comfort, and security.
George then became obsessed with using zPods™ to support children with autism along with all children who need sensory deprivation.
George started thinking more deeply about themes that experts deliver to parents of children with autism:
The room should be quiet at night. Some children may find white noise or a quiet, and consistent background noise such as a ceiling fan or air filter to be rather calming.
The bedroom should be comfortable, quiet, and dark with the option of adding a dim light to their bedroom.
If there is light coming in through the bedroom window, adding darker curtains could be necessary.
zPods focuses on putting into practice all of these themes so it encompasses the outcomes projected by these recommendations.
Therefore, we feel we are on the right track to helping children find the comfort and security they desire.
And, supporting children with autism in finding better sleep.
Learn how Axel got 76 more hours of sleep in his first week with his zPods Bed!
Axel is a non-verbal child with autism whose never been a good sleeper.
In their home if the kids can sleep until 4 am then it's a huge win. A typical good of night for Axel was sleeping from 9 or 10 pm to 4 am. Which is 6 or 7 hours of sleep.
These good nights were happening maybe 2 nights a week. The majority of nights Axel would fall asleep between 8 and 10 pm, wake up before 2 am and not go back to bed at all.
Typically, this would leave Axel's parents' running on only 20 hours of sleep per week. As Axel just turned 5 years old, this meant they've only been averaging 20 hours of sleep per week for the past 5 years.
As all of you can imagine, this means they've been exhausted.
Axel's mom said, "When Axel is Awake in his room he is literally bouncing off his walls and yelling (excited yelling, it’s not negative. It’s a stimming behavior)."
Since Axel got his zPods bed, all of this has completely changed!
Here is a recap of Axel's first week in his new bed.
Night 1 - Axel slept 12 hours through (His mom said, "probably for the first time in his whole life")
Night 2 - Slept 10 hours
Night 3 - Slept 8 hours
Night 4 - Slept 11 hours
Night 5 - Slept 12 hours
Night 6 - Slept 11 hours
Night 7 - Slept 12 hours
In the first week, Axel got close to 76 hours of sleep which is easily double the sleep he was getting before!
And compared to some of the really tough weeks, maybe even triple or quadruple the hours of more sleep.
His mom said this, "My husband and I have slept 7-9 hours a night all week and I don’t think that’s been possible since my 7 year old was born. And also, my 7 year old who is somehow able to sleep through Axel's midnight shenanigans is suddenly sleeping 10-12 hours too. Otto (my 7 year old) was probably sleeping 10pm -5 am. We did not realize how much Axel was effecting Otto."
And recently, we had an update that Axel is no longer throwing tantrums at school! Listen to what his mom had to say:
"Axel attends pre school for 3 hours in the afternoon (12-3). Axel was NEVER eager to go to school. He was just too tired. It got to the point where I would drop him off and he’d have to literally be carried into the school kicking and screaming. It was soul wrenching. I also got frequent phone calls from his teacher explaining that “Axel is really just too tired and he won’t stop crying”.
A week or so after setting up the Zpod Axel stopped throwing mega tantrums about going to school, he’s not throwing tantrums at school, AND most importantly (according to his teachers) he is significantly more engaged and focused. I didn’t inform them that we were buying this bed or anything but one teacher approached me in the pick up line to tell me how much happier Axel was, and also said “he must be sleeping better” we then proceeded to show her photos and talk about the bed.
At therapy (which runs 3-4 hours a day) they mentioned how he’s more focused and playful and far less emotional. Axel would have days here and there where he was so easily set off by seemingly nothing all day, and with a non verbal child it’s extremely frustrating because he can’t tell me why he’s upset.
These tantruming days have ceased since the introduction of the Zpod. "
Learn how Johnny is speaking and smiling now!
"It's been 3 months since my son received his zPod. And it has changed our lives in so many ways. My son is sleeping throughout the night now, which means his sister is getting a better nights sleep and that means mom and dad are getting the best rest we need as well.
My son was non verbal and struggling immensely with sleep and getting through our day to day routines. But ever since he started sleeping better, he has started saying words, getting through and even knowing and expecting our day to day routines with ease and has been smiling and laughing (we didn't see our son smile or laugh for almost 2 years).
zPods has changed our lives and allows us to feel our best which is helping our son navigate our world as his best self! Thank you so much!"
When your child sleeps better then you sleep better too. Listen to what Johnny's parents had to say after his first night!
"I just wanted to let you know that yesterday afternoon the bed was delivered. My husband and I got the bed built just in time for today Johnny's 2nd birthday.
When he got into his bed yesterday, he kept tapping on his chest. He is non verbal and this is his way of saying 'mine'. When he realized he could open and shut his own door, everyone was kicked out and he just laid in his bed for a while. It did take him a little longer to settle than usual because of his excitement. But Johnny usually is up at 5:30 every morning, not this morning! For his 2nd birthday Johnny slept from 9 pm last night until 8 am this morning! My husband and I haven’t slept in until 8 in years! We knew the Zpod was going to be amazing for him but we had no idea he would take to it so we’ll, and so soon!
I want to thank you for helping our family make this happen! We still can’t believe it! You have created such an amazing sensory bed! Everyone who has seen it is absolutely blown away.
Thank you again for everything."
And before we go any further, you need to know that our zPods are made for adults as well!
We recently welcomed our very first adult to the zPods family! Or as we like to say, our first zzzDult.
This lady and her little doggy started their very first zPods adventure! So technically it's our first zzzDog as well. (The dog didn't actually pay, she's just along for the ride)
The length of our bed is 6 feet 5 inches so it's not just made for kids but for adults as well.
If you are an adult and interested in purchasing a bed for yourself then feel free to send us a message below.
You need to believe that something different can happen.
This is something that we want families all over the world to think about...
Believe and always believe that something different can happen than you originally expected.
In the picture above is George Bailey's daughter, Madeline, who also has autism.
Let's just say, Madeline fell asleep earlier than normal. She fell asleep before the sun went down. ❤
Her father officially became a believer that something different can happen.
And this is what we want more than anything.
Every time we've seen success with a family they usually say something like,
"We never thought this could happen."
"We would never believe that this would be possible."
It's an emotional surprise that we want every family to feel when they see changes in their lives.
Watch the emotion on Madeline's face when she talks about calming herself when she's sad and angry ❤
Have you heard about the changes that Elaine has noticed after trying one of our sensory friendly beds?
Meet Elaine, a 9 year old girl with autism who would spend most of her nights awake with very little sleep. Maybe 6 hours a night but would be up off and on all night. To the point where her father could hear her making noises from the bedroom.
Sometimes she would have to calm herself in her closet.
After her family received Grant Support from the state of Minnesota for the purchase of her bed, Elaine is now sleeping 11 hours straight through on many nights.
Throughout the course of Elaine's life she has gone through many stages where she was trying to find comfort and calm so she could feel energized throughout the day.
As she has a sensory processing disorder, she's needed to make certain adjustments in her lifestyle.
For example, she would always keep her hair cut short because she couldn't stand the thought of her parents blow drying her hair.
The intensity of the sound was something that gave her so much discomfort that she finally decided to just keep her hair short.
This created another internal dilemma that was giving her discomfort. She would have to face social judgement from other classmates due to her style of her.
As this internal dilemma is so vivid and frustrating for Elaine... choosing between cutting her hair versus social judgement has been a challenging decision. Even though she really wanted to have long hair, the discomfort of the blow dryer was so bothersome that she chose to keep her hair short.
However, things have now changed. Within the first week of getting her bed, for the first time ever, she said to her father,
"Dad, do you mind blow drying my hair today?"
Her mother and father were stunned! This was unprecedented.
And, as you can see, her hair is growing longer the way she enjoys it.
Also, when she feels stressed and needs her safe space, she no longer goes into her closet to calm herself; she can calm herself in her bed.
And, another added touch, when the family plays board games, no one leaves the table in anger. Which apparently, Elaine found herself getting a little upset during family game time.
It just goes to show us, never underestimate the value of a full night of sleep
Learn how Xander is sleeping better and eloping much, much less.
For those who have not heard about Xander and his story, his life has gone in a new direction.
Before he got his new bed, it was beyond challenging for Xander to get a good night of sleep.
Besides the fact that he would only sleep a couple hours per night...
...his mom would find him cramped in random positions all over the house.
Or pulling out a mattress at the end of his parents' bed when he would be trying to get comfortable throughout the night.
It seemed he had been looking for that place that could give him that sense of comfort and calmness.
A place that is his... and of course JuJu’s as well.
As their adventures continue, Xander is sleeping through the night in his bed...
It seemed he had been looking for that place that could give him that sense of comfort and calmness.
A place that is his... and of course JuJu’s as well.
As their adventures continue, Xander is sleeping through the night in his bed...
And, his legs no longer hurt.
Apparently, because he would find himself in uncomfortable sleeping positions, his legs would be constantly sore.
Not to mention, he would be absolutely exhausted.
In speaking with his parents, it was an exciting and uplifting conversation, but definitely a lot of emotion as well...
...the largest sigh of relief you could say.
Now, something else has happened recently that we have to share with you.
Something that was bound to happen.
It was only a matter of time before JuJu would start hogging all the covers!
I guess Xander and JuJu need to pay attention to that old expression that...
..."Sharing is caring."
And, since Xander is so much happier his family is so much happier and rested as well.
"We have only had ours a week and it's the best investment we could have ever made!! My son loves it! He has slept and played better than ever!! Thanks zPods!!" - Xander's Mama, Ann.
Like we always say, when your kids sleep better then parents sleep better too.
And for some parents, they are so exhausted that they need a Hail Mary.
After talking with Lilly's mother, Andrea, it was apparent that they had exhausted almost everything and really needed some type of Hail Mary. Or, according to Andrea, she was just going to have to accept that "it was going to be this way for the rest of their lives."
Until they tried their first zPods Bed!
Meet Lilly Beans.
This amazing young lady went through some unexpected challenges that left her completely sleep deprived.
Starting at the age of 2, Lilly had been diagnosed with Autism and was only sleeping 2 hours per night.
Her mom said that all of a 'sudden everything started falling apart.'
From the ages 2-10 she was only averaging 2 hours of sleep per night.
And, because she was so restless and scared to sleep by herself she always had to sleep with her mom by her side.
As a result, her mom could only sleep 2 hours per night as well.
Sometimes, she would find Lilly trying to sleep behind the couch, nestled up against the wall for comfort.
As you can imagine, Lilly Beans and her mom were beyond sleep deprived as they both battled their sleep challenges.
Then, her mom came across one of our beds and literally said to herself,
"We've tried everything... tricks, supplements, medication, and nothing seems to work. This bed would be our final straw. Our Hail Mary! If this doesn't work then I will just have to accept this for the rest of my life."
Well, guess what, the Hail Mary came true!
Her mom couldn't believe it. Lilly Beans is now falling asleep between 7-9:30pm and never wakes up before 6am!
Think about that for a second... Lilly has gone from only sleeping 2 hours per night to now sleeping 8.5-11 hours per night!
And, her mom has gone from sleeping 2 hours per night to 6-8 hours per night. As a parent, imagine only getting 2 hours of sleep per night for 8 years.
It would be impossible to not feel exhausted on some level.
Also, Lilly is now going to bed on her own which is absolutely wild. Her mom would always have to comfort her to sleep every, single night.
It's almost like Lilly Beans is gaining a new sense of independence along with more rest.
In the evening, she will now go play in her room on her own and then go straight to bed without her parents saying a word.
Let's face it, it's not always easy for your kids to hop in bed on their own.
Not to mention Lilly Beans is not near as angry and irritable as she use to be. Sometimes, she would have meltdowns that were quite challenging.
It's amazing how much proper rest can be life changing for the whole family.
And like we always say, when our kids sleep better, we sleep better as well.
Judan was losing sleep because he thought monsters were hiding in his closet.
Judan is not the only kid that believed there was someone else or 'something else' living in his room.
Before getting his new bed, it would take Judan 2 hours to calm himself down after repeatedly checking his closet and looking underneath his bed as he circled in his imagination.
Every night, his parents would hear him rumbling around and even calling them out of terror.
As they would rush to his aide he would usually say something like,
"Mommy! Daddy! The monster is back again! I heard him in the closet and I thought he would come and get me!"
Of course, no monster would be around when they would rush into his room.
It wasn't until Judan got his new bed that he started feeling a new level of comfort and safety.
The biggest change that his parents noticed was that he was no longer calling them for comfort.
And, he was falling asleep 1-2 hours earlier.
They would be enjoying alone time in their room and noticed something different when they looked at their clock.
Judan would no longer be calling on them.
He would no longer be running into their room as well.
He stopped talking about the monsters.
His parents really noticed this as their alone time started getting longer.
Normally, they wouldn't have this much time to themselves.
And now, it's not just Judan that is sleeping better and feeling more safe, even his parents are finding more alone time.
It's been amazing for the whole family.
Just like Odyn and his family.
His parents will never forget the first time Odyn tested out one of our beds.
If he could have spoken these words, he might have said,
"I've got dibs on top bunk!"
Sure enough, this bed became more than what him and his family probably thought it would be.
It's as if he decided to create his own...
...Circle of Life just like in the "Lion King"
However, he's not holding up Simba, it's just his awesome toy truck.
All of us parents can remember a toy or 2 from our younger days.
Watching Odyn seem so happy and excited has brought many of us back to some special moments in our minds.
Whether it's been watching our own kids have the time of their lives or remembering our own early childhoods.
Sometimes we would just zone out as we got caught up in our own adventures. Just kids being kids.
Let's just say that he got so excited about his bed that he got a little more creative.
And as we all know, when all of us are more rested, creativity is usually at its finest.
We can think more clearly and have more energy to support our creative thinking.
And that's what we keep seeing with our amazing beds.
More rest, less exhaustion, and lots of smiles being introduced into so many households.
Natalie's progress has given her mother
When Natalie was sleeping in her closet, her mom would have to check on her 3-4 hours into the night.
And! She would have to wake up multiple times a night to comfort Natalie.
A mother will do anything to comfort their child and give them all the love and help they deserve.
However, parents need their rest as well.
With zPods™ the whole family can get more sleep.
Natalie now sleeps 11 hours straight on most occassions in her new safe space.
Which is amazing for her!
And, her mother Leah gets that extra bit of sleep she was looking for.
Some nights she might get an extra 3-4 hours of sleep because Natalie is sleeping like a baby.
Imagine how much more rested Leah feels now.
Over 365 days a year, that can be a total of an extra 45 days of sleep.
And you might be thinking,
“45 days? Where did we get that from?”
3 hours per night x 365 days per year = 1,095 hours total.
1,095 hours divided by 24 hours = 45 days.
Just imagine how much more rested Leah feels because Natalie is sleeping 11 hours straight.
There are so many people that would not put a price on finding that much more sleep.
Listen to Leah's update about Natalie!
So, after hearing Leah talk about Natalie being scared again while the family was on vacation we came up with a new idea...
How cool would it be if we could get zPods into hotels and Airbnb locations to accommodate children with special needs?
So we decided to add to our mission.
We are now mass producing zPods™ so we can start accommodating children outside their homes!
We realize this concept is not as simple as it sounds.
But! With this feedback we are in the process of pushing this concept with hotel chains.
As stated by the CDC, as 1 in 59 children under the age of 8 will have autism, it seems like preparation for this accommodation in hotels could be necessary.
If you are a hotel owner or AirBnb Host and want to accommodate children with special needs...
By the way, you have to hear the full story about how Ethan got his bed! A special note that put love in his father's heart ❤
The writing in the picture may be a little fuzzy, but here's what Ethan wrote:
Can you buy me a zPod please?
I will make sure the are turned off.
I will help with the patio.
I will give you extra massages.
I will help with not asking for so much stuff for Christmas.
I will help with taking care of it.
Now will you get me a zPod?
Let's just say Ethan got his wish!
Not only is Ethan no longer sleeping in his parent's bed, he is now developing a lifestyle that supports his level of comfort and security. Also, he has a place where his friends can come and hang out.
Note: Ethan is not diagnosed with autism. He is just a child that has trouble sleeping alone and is always wired.
The kids tend to get pretty excited when they see their bed for the first time. Look at Elijah's happy dance when he got his wish as well! 😂
Watch this little girl as she gets excited for her bed.
As a parent, ask yourself this question...
"Would you like more alone time because your kids have a place to hang?"
While Ethan and his friends are hanging out, they can have alone time from their parents.
Almost like the kids have their own private, play area.
And, their parents can have alone time as well.
Remember, being a parent can be overwhelming at times.
We don't say this in a bad way like you should have any guilt for needing alone time from your children.
But lets face it, many parents need their alone time to rest and recover from being a loving and energized parent.
Not to mention their kids can have their moments of independence as well. Sometimes, it's even fun for them to hang when they have their friends over.
Now some of you might be thinking, "What are different ways to pay for my bed?"
We understand that there are some people who need different financial options because hey, we get it, many of us have multiple financial priorities.
Which is why we want to make sure you have the right options to support this life changing purchase.
We realize that some families are looking for lending options to finance their bed.
If this is the first time you started learning about the zPods story...
...then we are honored that you've taken the time to learn about our passion for helping families all over the world. It's been an amazing journey thus far and we look forward to having you apart of it.
Please keep up with us on the zBlog and our social media platforms. Or, if you get busy and want to hear from us personally, then subscribe to our newsletter.
-The zPods Family