Dear New Attachment Parenting Mother,
My youngest attachment parented kid of 5 has been sleeping around.
Around the house.
And I want you to know that this is going to happen to you someday, at your house. Tell your husband this is going to happen and have him read this. But you only need to show him this if he is a naysayer and thinks your baby or toddler who is sleeping in your bed and is attached to your breast nonstop is soon going to be a teenager who still sleeps in the shape of an X in between the two of you.
We started attachment parenting in 2001 with our first kid. I say "we" because my husband was supportive and that is VERY important. Having a kid really tries a marriage and being on the same page with anyone about anything most of the time is hard, let alone when you are dealing with an extra human life in your house that is so very easy to mess up. (aren't we all messed up a little bit, in some way? nobody gets out totally healthy)
|A picture from my photo vaults ... I had just nursed Joel to sleep in a fancy restaurant, discreetly, thank you very much!|
Did the exact same thing with the second little blessing.
|Michael sleeping on me. People would ask if I wanted to lay him down somewhere and I would always just politely say, "No, thank you." I'm not the kind of mom who feels free when her kids are away from her. I feel free because I have them close to me.|
|Callie was in the sling a lot, as I was chasing after her two big brothers!|
|Check me out, all out to dinner at a fancy place with Aron's cousin and one of my best buds, Tresa. This was in 2008 and yes, I nursed little Eva to sleep and she crashed in my arms while I had a life.|
|Samuel nursing at our friend Jordan's private backyard swimming pool.|
Recently he slept in his sisters' room with his oldest sister on the floor in their "fort." They both slept all night with no problems and they slept in ... like REALLY LATE. My big boys chose to sleep in their own fort two half floors down and Eva ... well, she's a snuggle bug who still digs her mommy, so she took over Sam's bed for the evening.
Sometimes Sam will sleep in his oldest brother's bed when he's away at a Scout thing. He does it to keep the other brother company.
All this is to say that THEY WILL LEAVE YOUR BED. Often VERY reluctantly, often before they are ready (especially if you plan on having a big family like we always did). I HATED moving kids into their own rooms and never understood why my husband could not just knock out a wall and create some mega-bed for our family. Now that my oldest is 14 (and his brother is 12), he most certainly does not want anything to do with this and would DIE if he read this post.
I dug AP so much that I kept it going by homeschooling. Sure, if my kids beg to go to school we can work that out, but for now they all dig being taught at home and going out to have lots of fun!
Treasure these times, parents. All too soon they are preferring their friends to you, driving cars who-knows-where, working jobs, finding their own way. Is attachment parenting a bit selfish? You bet it is. And I don't care. I got to parent how I wanted to parent ... in a way that made it so I wasn't stressed out listening to a baby screaming and in a way that made sure I got plenty of sleep so I was patient and usually ready for what each day threw at me when my husband was often traveling for work.
|Youngest to oldest, Sam, Eva, Callie, Michael and Joel!!!|
|Aron, my husband. No, really, what would I do without him?|
Write me anytime in the comments section or at firstname.lastname@example.org.