When I was practising yoga during my pregnancy, I remember the instructor kept telling us, “the child lives in the mother’s aura 3 years after it’s born.”
I thought that this was an interesting thought at the time, but now I have a 3 year old girl and I am convinced she has been in my aura since she was born. Pregnancy is an incredible thing. Your child begins as a part of you and slowly grows until it no longer needs your nourishment. I think the meaning of my Yogi’s statement was that it takes time for us to separate both physically and mentally.
Our three year old has been sleeping in our bed since she was born. She was a fussy newborn and extremely colic. It was the easiest solution for us, as parents, to have her between us during the difficult times and somehow it’s been that way since.
I once read some research where scientists monitored a baby's heartbeat while they were sleeping. They observed both babies that slept on their own in a bed in their own room and babies that slept close to their parents where they could feel the presence of the parents.
The heartbeat of the babies that slept in their own room had consistently higher heart rate and it was interpreted as stress by the conductors of this study. This research stuck with me and is probably the biggest reason why I haven’t pressed the issue of her sleeping in her own room and bed until recently.
Knowing the benefit of the child being close has proven to help us with our child’s development, but it is has also become clear that it’s probably not the healthiest for my marriage to always have your children in between you. It’s easy to lose the intimacy with your spouse when there is literally always something in between you. She turned 3 a few months back so we feel it’s time for her to sleep on her own.
Comforting closeness is also important for kids, just like adults so we tried the Lulla doll. She has taken extremely well to the doll -- as in, the first moment she held the doll she began to mother it.
She treated the doll as if it were her child and showed the signs of caring for a baby right away. This was amazing to see because it normally takes a little bit of warming up to a doll before she acts so motherly towards it. With the Lulla doll she was behaving differently from the start.
I think it gave her a sense of caring for someone and it made her feel more independent. It is incredible, she has had the doll for a week and she is now requesting to sleep in her own bed with her new sleeping companion. Truly remarkable. She seems to be creating her own aura now and that is a beautiful thing to watch.
And it does wonders for the marriage!
Photos: Owen Fiene