When I had my baby I held him every second I possibly could. I skipped dinner so he could stay flaked across my chest. I ignored the postman and visitors knocking on the door because he looked too comfortable to be disturbed. I cancelled nights out as I preferred to watch him sleep. And I dreaded visiting friends and family because they robbed my cuddles.
‘What are you gonna do?’.
‘He’s too attached’.
‘He’s not going to know what’s happened when the new baby arrives’.
It’s all bullshit! He’s only fifteen months old. He’s still a baby.
I didn’t have much of a maternity leave on my first, I chose to return to work after a few weeks because a job opportunity came up that I couldn’t refuse. So I missed a lot of my first borns milestones. Thinking back I regret most part of it, but I wasn’t long out of my teens and enjoyed the weekend lifestyle because I lived at home with my parents who could babysit every single night.
He’s spoilt. He’s too attached. He’s not going to know what’s happened when the new baby comes.
When I became a stay at home mammy a few years later after having Frankie we couldn’t afford childcare on my basic hairdressing wage. My priorities changed, I was at home with two kids and a tight budget. Obviously, we don’t need a childminder so my kids come almost everywhere with me.
Kayla doesn’t care less who she’s with, once they fill her with treats and she gets to play. I have spent the past five years sharing her. From home to home. A night here, night there. Co-parenting is tough – mentally, physically and emotionally but she adjusted to her new lifestyle just fine.
Frankie on the other hand frets, panics, and sobs uncontrollably if I leave him. It’s heartbreaking. He doesn’t ‘settle’ after a few minutes like the books say. He continues to watch the door until I return.
He is attached to his mammy. But he doesn’t hang out if me, pull out of me or sit on my lip all day. He does quite the opposite. Sometimes he completely ignores that I’m around. I can go about my day in the kitchen cooking, cleaning, doing the day-to-day stuff. He really enjoys doing his own thing playing with his
Kayla’s toys. He just likes to know I’m there. He will follow me the odd day, when he’s teething for example or if he has a head cold. I don’t hold him, carry him, cuddle him 24/7 like everyone thinks unless he’s unwell.
I might be a tad over responsive to his cries, I run to his aid at a whimper. But why shouldn’t I? He is a baby, if he’s upset I’m going to comfort him. If I had it my way we would co-sleep, but he hates it and loves his cot. Although he adores his cuddles first thing in the morning, maybe more so with teddy than me. I invest in our relationship with everything we do together, I enjoy every moment we have and I love that he needs me.
He’s not spoilt. He may be attached but rather that, than a kid who shows no affection, love and doesn’t enjoy a cuddle at story time just before bed. I’m not sure why I’m even trying to justify my actions to people who don’t understand. Yes, it can be overwhelming at times but you know what someday I will miss this. I’ll hold him, breathe him and keep him close. He won’t be a baby for long.