When I was pregnant with my first child I really wasn’t planning on co-sleeping. I had read in many pamphlets about how unsafe it was to put your baby to bed on anything but a hard surface. Being a new young mother I was going to adhere to the strict guidelines because I didn’t know much about being a Mom and I wasn’t yet in tune with my intuition. Plus, the fear of SIDS was plastered all over and remained in the back of my mind.
All that changed when he was finally born. I blossomed as a new mother and felt a new kind of love. This love drove me to do new things, but I still remained fearful of the outside world and their judgments. Breastfeeding was very difficult at first and it took awhile to establish. I was determined though. There were many long nights I fell asleep rocking him in the rocking chair. I would try to place him in the bassinet or crib but he woke up shortly after I set him down. I would let him sleep in my arms often but that got to be exhausting and I couldn’t get anything else done. I didn’t know anything about baby carriers and had some terrible back pain so I struggled a lot during the day. Eventually, I was just so tired I would bring him to bed with me at night to lay and eat. We would fall asleep together. It was the best sleep either of us had gotten. Although I was able to get restful sleep, I was always conscious that he was right there with me.
It was like heaven but I couldn’t share this wonderful experience with anyone but my husband and mother. Co-sleeping has become so taboo in America and I was afraid of ridicule. People would always ask “Is he a good sleeper?” and I would just reply with a simple “Yes”. I didn’t dare tell them he slept in my bed. How could what felt so right also feel so wrong? Little did I know I was doing something awesome for my babies and myself. There are so many benefits to co-sleeping.
“Sometimes you will not know the value of a moment until it becomes a memory” – Dr. Seuss
Fast forward to my third child. I’m no longer a fearful mother easily swayed by society. I enjoyed many months of co-sleeping with my two boys. I’m now coming up on 6 months with my third and loving every minute of it. My husband couldn’t agree more. He enjoys the baby cuddling as much as I do. I’ve also found communities online of others who feel the same as me, so now I don’t feel so alone. You could say my daughter “sleeps through the night” even though she wakes to feed and is right back to sleep. The difference is, neither of us get out of bed! I now tell everyone in my family with confidence because I know I’m doing the best for my babies whether they agree or not. Plus, we did it twice already and have two amazing, healthy boys! You can’t argue with that. 😉