My sister and her husband were recently blessed with their first child – a darling baby daughter. My little niece is now about 2 1/2 months old. Yesterday, my sister sent me a very encouraging letter. She gave me permission to share excerpts with you. Here is a picture of Baby M.
“…I wanted to share some of my mothering experiences with you. I know it is largely due to your example and advice that I’m having such a wonderful first-time-mother experience. And the more I see the struggles of other first-time moms around me and on Facebook, the more thankful I am that I know better and have such a great support system.”
“I’m so glad you encouraged me to more fully embrace sleep-sharing (once I was ready for it)… Whenever she’s ready to eat at night, I perch myself against the foam wedges with my brest friend. She eventually nurses herself to sleep, and I continue to hold her for a while because she’ll often stir a bit for one more little snack (and because I want to!). When we’re ready to lie down, I lay her right next to me, and she squirms a bit so I put my arm around her back to roll her onto her side so we’re face to face and her bottom is in the crook of my elbow and I pat her back. Sometimes in the night, if she’s not actually touching me, she’ll start to move her arms as if she were going to wake up, then she’ll arch her back and wriggle her whole little body over until she touches me or my arm. Her eyes stay closed, and as soon as she touches me again, she immediately stops moving and goes back into a deeper sleep. I love it! The huge grins she gives me during a 4am diaper change and again when she wakes up for the day are also priceless.”
“I am now completely confident in myself to enjoy this sleeping arrangement without any worry of not being aware of her in my sleep. I’m now convinced that the last couple months of pregnancy prepares a mother for sleeping with baby, because with that big belly, I couldn’t roll over or move around in my sleep at all without waking up to help move my belly into a different position. So now I still don’t move in my sleep without waking up enough to know where she is, and I have no fear of “rolling over on her” (as everyone else fears) or elbowing her, even when she tucks herself in right under my chin.”
“And, to make nighttime even easier, she started nursing lying down! So now I don’t even have to sit up or shuffle around grabbing the wedges until morning (because she won’t nurse lying down if she’s fully awake). It’s been great!”
“I also appreciate your support in encouraging me to keep trying the sling. I probably wouldn’t have given up on it forever, but it was discouraging that she seemed to hate it so much. But now that the weather is warmer and we don’t need big jackets, it’s been easier to start trying to plop her in the sling to go in a store or something rather than lug the carseat. So this past weekend was the first time we went to the mall since she was born. I just carried her in the sling and she was fine! And the other day when we had to go to the dr for dh, I put her in the sling to go in cuz there was no way I was carrying the carseat and dh couldn’t, and she was fine the whole nearly 2 hour wait. She even went to sleep in the sling in the waiting room for the first time! And yesterday, she needed to be held, but I needed to make turkey soup, so I put her in the sling awake, and as I was preparing all the veggies, she soon drifted off! It made me very happy! So I’m very glad to have had your influence of carrying babies in slings and being able to do other things at the same time…”