And I'm all for it.
I'm not a lazy person by nature. I think it is impossible to run a business and be lazy- however, at the end of the day when I'm sapped dry by emails, editing, shooting, a demanding toddler, a baby who just wants non-stop cuddles, a house that is STILL being renovated 2 years later and spinning a thousand other plates in the air... the easy way is the best for me.
So. Natural parenting/attachment parenting- what is it? For me it is an easy, positive way to parent. Not everyone can/is able to do these but I've found that it means the babies have just slipped into our lifestyle without any huge shock to the system. It has also meant that I can still work (my first shoot was just 3 weeks after having Kit).
Wikipedia says 'Attachment parenting (AP) is a parenting philosophy that proposes methods which aim to promote the attachment of mother and infant not only by maximal maternal empathy and responsiveness but also by continuous bodily closeness and touch.'. Perfect for me. Sling wearing, cuddling, responding the baby's cries rather than 'cry it out' methods and the idea is to strengthen the natural parent/child bonds and ignore the old mantra's of 'making a rod for your own back' or 'spoiling' a baby. Things like skin to skin contact, baby wearing, co-sleeping (which we don't do at night as Andy, despite my constant reassurance is still scared about squashing the baby), breastfeeding, co-bathing.
Breastfeeding- no need for sterilising, bottles, measuring formula, timing feeds etc- it all sounds so complicated! I'd much rather notice Kit is peckish and simply whip out a boob.
Nap-time- cuddling my baby to sleep in bed allows us to both drift off happily, safely (always co-sleep safely following this advice!) and there is no upset from him.
Responding to his cues- I'm on call for him 24/7. This doesn't mean that I am 'spoiling' him. It simply means that I have a very happy, healthy and reassured little boy who knows that he can communicate and be understood.
Babywearing- again, pure laziness from me. He is happy, I have my hands free. Plus I really hate prams. Clunky, huge annoying things that don't fit through our front (or back!) doors without needing to be taken apart first.
The idea is to always be kind, caring, loving towards our children, basically all the things you would want them to be, and what better way to teach them than by being like this yourself?
The raised good website says 'Parents who treat their babies with love, compassion and respect and who are responsive to their baby’s signals are literally wiring their children’s brains for empathy, trust and the ability to self-regulate stress.
Attachment Parenting International identifies eight basic principles natural parents follow, which are:
Prepare for pregnancy, birth, and parenting.
Feed with love and respect.
Respond with sensitivity.
Use nurturing touch.
Engage in nighttime parenting.
Provide constant, loving care.
Practice positive parenting, not discipline.
Strive for balance in personal and family life.'
All babies want is their basic needs met in order to be happy.