I didn't really have a predetermined idea of how I would parent before I became a mum. I knew I wanted to make sure my baby knew how much I loved her and I knew I'd never have the guts to do cry it out techniques, but other then that I didn't give it much thought. I think its because part of me believed I was never going to be a mum, even while I was pregnant. My battle with infertility had unfortunately resigned me to always expect the worst.
Now that shes here I don't think I necessarily fall into a particular category of parenting style, but I'm probably closest to attachment parenting. Not in a full on way though, it just seems to be the path we have naturally taken. I never read any parenting books, I just let her guide me. There were no set routines that I followed on the hour every hour, but we naturally found our groove. She let me know what she needed and I followed. Parenting is a tough gig at times and I believe in doing what works for you and your baby.
For us this meant her being close to me. Not all the time but enough to know that I'm there for her if she needs me and enough to comfort her when shes upset.
She slept in our room until she was 9 months, firstly in her bassinet and then in her cot. I loved having her close and knowing I was right beside her if something happened. She used to choke a lot in her sleep in the beginning due to her (undiagnosed) allergic reactions. Eventually I knew I had to let go and put her in her own room. She needed the independence and we both needed uninterrupted sleep. We've fallen into a habit now that each morning when she wakes she comes into bed with me for another quick nap before we get up for the day. I love the morning snuggles and it lets us both get an extra half hour or hour of precious sleep (if I'm really lucky). It works for us, so that's what we do.
She has her day naps on me or next to me. I didn't set out for it to be this way, but we've ended up here. Yes I've tried putting her down during the day and sometimes it works, but only for fifteen minutes max. Instead of rushing around trying to do something in fifteen minutes I'd rather have time to myself for up to an hour, which I get when she sleeps on me. It doesn't bother me that shes on me because I use that time to catch up on tv shows, read blogs or write blog posts. Or sometimes I just sit on the couch stroking my precious babe while appreciating the fact that I actually get to snuggle with her. There will be a time when she doesn't want to snuggle with me anymore and I'm well aware of that so for now I'm enjoying the cuddles while they last.
We also babywear. I didn't really know what babywearing was before I had her. I'd seen people carrying their babies at the shops in the buckle up carriers, but that was my only exposure to babywearing. I bought a very cheap buckle carrier before she was born, but soon found out it required 3 people working together to try and put it on, and we still didn't work it out. So for a while I gave up on babywearing, but she most definitely wanted to be carried. After getting a sore back and arms I looked into other baby carriers and discovered the Woogi Woo which was a wrap carrier and we were back on our babywearing journey. I've carried her while grocery shopping, while out to lunch, at home when shes sick and even on a trip to Ikea. Now that shes grown out of the Woogi Woo (it only goes to 10kg) we've moved onto using a Suppori sling so I can continue carrying her when she wants to be carried. Babywearing has been such a great experience for both of us and helped bring us both closer together (literally and emotionally).
According to a lot of people I'm probably getting a lot of my parenting wrong by doing all of these things, but for us they work. I don't think shes going to have separation anxiety when shes older because she happily sleeps in her cot at night and plays independently during the day. She socialises with other babies and shes hitting all her milestones so none of it is disrupting her development, as far as I'm concerned. She's happy and I'm happy and in the end that's all that really matters.
Linking up with Jess