Spare the crib, spoil thyself

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While taking my one year old son for a stroll a few days ago I stopped into my neighborhood coffee house. I noticed a woman with a similarly aged child sipping a coffee in the corner. We oohed and aahed over the babies and began to talk about our parenting experiences with the fervor of isolated stay at home parents.

“Are you still nursing?”
“Yes I am. It’s just so convenient.”
“Me too, you never have to worry about running out…”
“And it’s always the right temperature!”
“Do you stay at home?”
“Yes, staying at home is so great.”
“Yes, a little isolating, but very rewarding.”

We enjoyed the instant friendship created by our shared experiences, thrilled to have a few minutes to share conversation with an adult in the middle of our child filled day.

She asked me if he was sleeping well at night, as her baby kept getting up around two a.m.
“He sleeps with me, so he gets up some, but I don’t really notice.” I informed her.
“You still sleep with him? You are spoiling him.” She said in a sweet, caught you with a second slice of cake, voice.
“No way,” I responded “I don’t believe that for a second.”
“You’re right,” she said smiling. “You are spoiling yourself.”

She’s right. Like a great massage, or that sexy red pair of cuban heeled shoes, or a box of exclusive chocolates, snuggling up to my baby every night is a treat, and a way I can spoil myself. My daughter turns seven this year, so I know how quickly the baby time goes. I also am fairly certain this is my last child. So there is a part of me that snuggles up to him at night, warm and fuzzy in my bed, and feels like I am catching hold of as much of his chubby babyhood as possible.

For me, attachment parenting is mostly about getting the most out of my children’s childhood as I can. There is also a big laziness component. I like not having to walk the floor for an hour to get my baby to sleep before setting him in his crib. I love not having to get up and heat water for f*rmula when he wakes up hungry at 3 a.m. I like the extra sleep I get by popping a nipple in his mouth when he starts to stir. I don’t have to be very awake to nurse him when we are sleeping side by side. I find slings easier to carry in my diaper bag than strollers. However, as important as these benefits are, the true reason behind my decision to co-sleep, nurse, and baby-wear, is the extra coziness, of close contact with my baby.

The baby years seem so long when you are in the middle of them, but in reality they are so fleeting. They crawl before you can get the fog of motherhood out of your head, they walk before you can get used to them crawling, they start to talk about the time you are really understanding their non verbal cues. Suddenly they are two, and stridently demanding their first taste of freedom. Then they are going to school, and a part of their life is lived outside of you. The small precious baby who once required you for everything is suddenly a small person with their own friends, and experiences that you are no part of at all.

So I co-sleep, and nurse, and baby-wear, so I can keep my baby closer to me for just a bit longer.

Scylla

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0 thoughts on “Spare the crib, spoil thyself”

  1. Wonderful post! I feel the same way about parenting my baby at night…why waste all that time? It seems as if everyone is always complaining about not having enough time in a day…well why not take advantage of the night?

    Thanks for sharing your beautiful AP experience with us!

  2. I am so right there with you – both on AP being my way of squeezing every last yummy ounce out of babyhood…and it being laziness on my part 🙂 Great post!

  3. I’m the same, I love those night time snuggles and I am way too lazy to give up the night-time feeds, she can latch herself on while I doze, it’s perfect! And I think cosleeping has been a fantastic way for littlepixie and her dad to bond, waking up to a slobby baby kiss (or a head butt!) every morning is the best!

  4. “For me, attachment parenting is mostly about getting the most out of my children’s childhood as I can. ” Wonderful quote! I think we have children about the age we are getting cynical about life so we can enjoy the beauty of childhood once again.

  5. I agree. And for any of you – like me – who inherited a crib from your relatives, here are some tips for putting it to good use.

    Toy bin, laundry drop off (clean or dirty!), guest coat holding zone (for when you have a big party and the coats don’t all fit in the closet), birthday or Christmas present holding zone, etc.

    Cribs are great for when you don’t want your children to disturb the stacked laundry or open presents before it’s time!

  6. Don’t forget cat bed!! My son enjoyed sleeping in the crib, but Lily would have none of it. So the cat slept in the crib because she didn’t like to sleep in bed with us when Lily was in bed with us!

  7. LOL @ that last post. My cat sleeps in the crib too 🙂 I love being lazy with my 5 month old. And I know I would be a lot less ”nice mommy” if i wasnt able to slip a boob in her mouth when she wakes up for the 4th time so that both of us can go back to sleep. Thanks for reminding me that its ok for her not to sleep all night yet. And that I dont need to worry about it.

  8. The crib my parents insisted on giving us is a lovely changing area, dressing table, clothes dryer, cat bed and stuffed animal repository.

    We were going to get a co-sleeper when we had a bit more cash on hand, but she is now 6 weeks old and still in our bed and we are comfortable with that–i think she can just stay in our bed and we can use the co-sleeper money for a swank Mother’s Day present 🙂

  9. I loved this post. I currently have our 3rd child, (our last!) in bed with us and love it. It’s nice to see that other people have the same ideals as we do, because it feels like we are in the minority with the things we do – slings, cloth diapers, co-sleeping, etc. I just want to have him close to me as much as possible, because with a 3 year old and a 5 year old, I am so busy and I know that it all goes by so fast.

  10. i share the same happiness in co-sleeping, baby wearing and nursing. i get addicted in doing them for my baby. and the experience is very rewarding! and true, we get enough of our baby’s memories!

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