Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Our Bed

It's the first cold day of autumn, and as I woke to a 60 degree house I found myself grateful for (yet another) controversial parenting choice. My warm, snuggly toddler was cozily snoring wrapped in my arms.

The window was partially open last night, and our attic bedroom got chilly. Phoebe's soft purple blanket enveloped the two of us. We woke up to cloudy breath but warm toes. 

Yes, she still sleeps with me. I say me because my husband works nights, and so Phoebe and I, like a mother rabbit and her kit, snuggle up in our big bed and sleep. She sleeps with me touching her, and often I wake with her head on my shoulder, her little body fitted against mine, like she remembers being part of me once.

Phoebe around 18mo, and me.


And now, I write this on my phone while we nap. She naps with me, too, and always has. When I'm at work my husband naps with her. Since she was little I took the advice to "sleep when the baby sleeps" very seriously. And I developed a habit of curling her up in my arms, laying flat on my back, and letting my newborn sleep on my chest. Now as a two year old, she sleeps with my arm as a pillow.

Even her first night out of the womb, she has only slept contentedly with me. And rightfully so... she was never alone before she was born. Why should she be alone in the big dark cold world? She can be with mama.

Cosleeping... the stories of tragic infant deaths are not to be taken lightly. I did all my research and follow all the guidelines. (See them here: https://kellymom.com/parenting/nighttime/cosleeping/) If it doesn't work for you, or you want to sleep alone, or you want to sleep train (I never have and don't think I could, it's too traumatic for me) then you do you!

She has never slept at night in a crib. I tried a bassinet and failed there too. Cody got her to nap a few times in her crib but I never could. When we moved we got rid of her toddler bed- her bed is our bed.

I go to sleep with her every night at 8-9pm, missing those sweet parenting freedom hours that I've only ever heard about and never experienced. Did you catch that new Netflix series...? Rented a RedBox that's R rated and watched it when your kids went to bed? Maybe I will, too, in 5-9 years. Am I sad about it? Nope. I work full time, remember? And need these hours to reconnect with this baby.

My life has slowed significantly, and attachment parenting is not for the faint of heart. But I won't get this time back with her, and I'm hyper conscious of how fast she is growing up. I'm desperate to be part of every moment possible; the times she's deep asleep, dreaming, in the place between sleep and awake, or drowsily welcoming the cold fresh dawn with me by her side. Her bed is our bed.