Wednesday, 21 April 2010
When Alice was born she cried a lot and loudly. Very loudly. I thought perhaps that maybe all mothers hear their baby's cries louder than others, but friends with their own little ones assured me that Alice was just especially noisy. She seemed to be very extreme. I felt unable to read the signs, because she only really did one. She went from sunny and contented to full blown screaming in the blink of an eye. I wondered what I was doing wrong. I knew of other people with babies who did controlled crying or even 'cry it out' from a young age and despite what I'd read, these babies seemed so much happier than mine. Perhaps I'd got it all terribly wrong. Maybe responding to every cry was making her unhappy.
Despite my concerns, I kept on carrying Alice frequently, calming her as soon as she cried and feeding her to sleep. Every instinct in my body was telling me that was right. Well, my little babba is eight months old tomorrow, and I realised today that she is a totally different baby. She rarely cries now, and if she does it is more of a whimper that I can attend to before it worsens. She wakes with a smile and giggles all the time. My fears were totally unfounded. It is impossible to say, but I don't think that she would be the confident, curious little creature she is today if we had abandoned our instincts and gone down the more common path.