My journey with co-sleeping: the ups and downs
by Flaurence CD
I sleep with my children since their tender birth and I am proud of it. Available at arm's length, my reassuring warmth offers them constant comfort. I can breastfeed without having to get up, go back to sleep in the middle of the feed and benefit from those precious minutes of sleep gained. Also, having them so small next to me brings me a joy that is hard to explain and I cherish with all my heart how lucky I am.
I have slept with my children every night since they were born and I am happy about it. I take advantage of these sweet moments shared, to contemplate them and imbibe our closeness. Sometimes, however, I want to leave, take off a bit, but a few moments after I stopped, their cries remind me and I return to snuggle up against them. Complete nights without mom are quite rare, but I want to be their source of comfort and give them everything I can. And then, learning to sleep alone is not synonymous with independence, but only accustoms the child to understanding that when night falls, mom limits her presence.
I have slept with my children since their very first day and sometimes I doubt my choices. I'm afraid I've become addictive, afraid they can never be well without me. That they always need to be able to touch me, that a breast in the mouth is always requested. Despite everything, I have this feeling of accomplishment, knowing that I am available at all times. I love that they can always count on me, that mom meets their needs, whatever they are. However, I must admit that I sometimes envy those who have peace all night once the door is closed.
I sleep with my children every day of the year and sometimes I am exhausted. I cry silently, trapped between their bonded bodies. Trapped, sore and my body feeling assaulted. These little hands constantly trying to touch me sometimes look like restraint belts and my breasts, despite being emptied, can't always escape the mouths that want to suckle profusely.
Co-sleeping is a blessing and a curse for me: it made me go through all kinds of emotions. I still live this constant fight to this day, between my freedom and my values as a mom. All this to say that while the memories of those times will no doubt be sweet and nostalgic, I want to remind myself that I will have sacrificed body and soul in the name of epic love.