You've probably heard of the practice of swaddling your baby. Your friends probably used swaddling to help soothe their babies as they sleep peacefully in their crib. You're probably wondering about what swaddling is, and if it can be a benefit to your upcoming bundle of joy.
What is Swaddling?
Swaddling is a practice where you snugly wrap your infant in a blanket in order to restrict movement.
This practice has been used the world over since biblical times.
Benefits of Swaddling
There are risks associated with swaddling your baby:
It is important to weigh all the benefits and risks before beginning the practice of swaddling. If your baby is going to be born in the warmer months, I recommend not swaddling them in a flannel blanket. If you plan on swaddling, use breathable cotton blankets.
Definitely talk to your doctor about the proper way to swaddle your baby. Also, many birthing/parenting classes can teach you the safe way to swaddle baby. If you cannot make it to parenting classes, nurses at the hospital can teach you how to swaddle.
Also, once your baby is here, if you see that he or she isn't a fan of the swaddling, definitely discontinue the practice.
Growing up, I heard "You will have a kid that is just like you, only worse."
My mom wasn't the best judge of character, so I didn't pay it any mind...until I heard other grown ups saying it. With all the stories I heard about my time as a toddler, it was enough for me to turn away from the idea of having children.
Then...I had one.
In 2018, I gave birth to the absolute greatest gift in the world: my son. I knew that life was going to different, chaotic, and a wild ride. This child had a strong personality from the moment he was born. As he grew, so did his personality. He became sillier, strong-willed, mischievous, and a slight prankster. I'm sure you're all thinking: "Babe, all toddlers are like this. What makes yours special?" Simple! He's my kid, and he literally pulls a 'me' on me every single day. One of his latest moments occurred at dinnertime. I asked him if he was (I signed) 'all done' with eating, and he started to give me his leftover chicken nuggets. He was about to drop them in my hand, when he turned his hand away and stuffed a piece in his mouth. He did this 4 more times. After doing this, he erupted in a fit of laughter.
Another thing he likes to do is gross me out (apparently, I did the same thing to my parents when I was a toddler). My son LOVES to put his hand in his bath water, and then lick the palm of his hand. Grosses me out every time. I tell him "Ewww, no thank you."
He cracks up: Every. Single. Time.
I feel like I literally gave birth to myself.
Aside from the silliness, he is exceptionally loving. At school, he comforts friends who are sad and he tries to make them laugh (which is a total 'me' thing. I did the same thing back in the day, and I still do it now).
When I look at my son, I encourage him to be silly, strong, loving, nurturing, and I encourage his desire to learn. Another trait of mine that he has is his love of books. He loves to skim through the pages, looking at pictures, and he loves to be read to.
I may groan when he grosses me out or pulls a fast one on me, but he is exhibiting the best parts of myself. This needs to be encouraged, as well as anything healthy that he shows an interest in, going forward.
CJ has so many toys, but the first thing he grabs in his play area are his books. This happens every single day. We go to his play area, and he grabs his books. He sits on the mattress in his play area (it's a mattress that was in his playard. It's just small enough to fit in his play area, and it satisfies his love of uneven surfaces). He surrounds himself with the books, and he flips through each and every one.
After he's done looking through each book, he brings all of them to me so I can read them. He lines them up in front of me, and then chooses a book for me to read to him. The books are extremely interactive so we have a lot of fun with our story time. There is one book that he likes called "At the Zoo." At the end of the story, I ask him to point out his favorite animal, and he ALWAYS points to the monkey.
Fun fact: When I was pregnant, I had a feeling he would like monkeys. The fact that he actually likes monkeys is pretty awesome.
Moms: What books do you read to your children? Let me know in the comments below, or hit me up on social media.