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Embracing the velcro baby

Littlest in the slingIt’s funny how the drip drip drip of popular opinion can begin to wear you and your best intentions down

It’s also strange how I seem to have completely wiped the newborn days with the girls from my memory – I can vaguely remember how we did things but the detail is all rather hazy…

I know that Littler was very hard work in the same way I know that labour hurts – something that I only REALLY remembered when I was definitely in labour and about 15 minutes before Littlest arrived

Littlest and I spent the first week after he arrived mostly in bed together – I was incredibly weak after a bit of blood loss and Mr Muddling is a gem for buying into the idea that rest and recuperation in bed are A Good Thing after having a baby

When I got up and started going around it was easier to keep him close, to have him in a sling or curled up with me and so we have carried on – he’s been attached or within arms reach of me for about 23 hours a day since he arrived and the other hour has been spent being cuddled by someone else

I’ve tried to put him down for 5 minutes in the chair, in the duffle bag but he has made it clear that he is not a fan and is only happy having a wriggle on the floor when someone he recognises is nice and close

The great thing is that he sleeps nicely in the sling, he sleeps nicely in bed alongside me and, whilst he is rather grumpy, being close to us seems to make him a little less unhappy and at least if he is in the sling I can get on with other things – admittedly with my arms rather further away from my body than I’m used to

All is good

Except that you do get rather a lot of comments wondering ‘when ARE you going to put that baby down?’, ‘how long is he going to be in bed with you for?’ and ‘it will do him good to get used to being away from you’ – and they do start to undermine your confidence a bit

Yes there is a part of me that worries that when I go back to work (tick tock, tick tock looming on the horizon) it will be a wrench for us both but honestly it is going to be a wrench whatever I do and at least this way he will have had the advantages of closeness to me in these early days

Yes I do wonder if I am making life harder for later down the road but he is so small, I can’t believe that this really is creating ‘a rod for my own back’ and if I teach him to co-sleep nicely now at least he’ll be comfortable doing it when I’m back at work and the only time we will get together is in bed at night

So for the moment I am continuing to embrace the baby that won’t be put down, to remind myself when I get a little touched out that this is only for a short time in the greater scheme of things and to learn how to crochet with my arms further away from my body than I’m used to

And I do wonder if he knows that we need to be close – that he knows that I need more cuddles and love from him or that he needs to be closer to me because of what is going on – who knows but we aren’t going to change how we do things just because someone else isn’t convinced it is the right thing for us to do

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5 comments to Embracing the velcro baby

  • Completely identify with you! Although my 10 week old sleeps well on her Moses basket at night, during the evening and day she doesn’t like to be put down- aren’t slings amazing!!

  • Stick to your guns – this stage is over too soon, sadly! x

  • My younger daughter was a velcro baby, simply because it was the easiest way to deal with 2 and I was more confident in doing it our way (than with my first). She’s super independent now at 3, but still gives me the best cuddles, and showers me with declarations of love. So where’s the rod that I’ve created exactly? hm. Ah, to have a baby so close to you again, why wouldn’t you?

  • Glad you’re not giving in to “peer pressure”. People are always worried about a baby becoming “independent” or “spoiling a baby”. They eventually move away from us naturally. I haven’t heard of anyone going to university still sleeping next to their mummy.

  • Candace

    Good for you – I don’t believe that a baby can really be spoiled but people told me the same thing. And as this isn’t your first time being a mum I suppose you should do what you think is best. Best wishes!

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