I actually was thinking about writing an over-opinionated entry about crunchy vs. conventional parenting and with the TIME magazine cover all over facebook, it gives me the perfect opportunity to do so. It’s so interesting because I can say before having Paisley I was much more conventional, but since having her I’ve definitely gotten more crunchy. I think that just happens…
Without further ado:
- Childbirth: I’m pro-hospital/pro-homebirth (with a CNM)/pro-natural as possible. I’ve talked about this a ton lately. I think women should be supported and allowed to labor wherever they feel safest and attended by competent professionals in either setting. And CNM is specific to me. With the anti-nauseas I need and IV therapy any other type of midwife is out.
- Breastfeeding: I’m pro-breastfeeding. It’s not easy. And it’s not always fun either. But I really think the benefits outweigh the negatives so much that I will always recommend giving it your very best shot. (And seriously you guys, I bf out of laziness really…if I’m going to be brutally honest it is just too easy to hand them a boob in the middle of the night instead of get up and make a bottle!!) As far as “extended” breastfeeding goes (past the 2 year mark)…they keep proving that there are heath benefits for the baby, and even the mother but I was ready to be done at a year and so were both my girls. I’m thinking it will probably be that way with all my children, but who knows…like so many things it will be child by child, year by year.
- Bedsharing: I’m against. Just for myself personally. I used to think people that shared their bed with their kids were crazy-now I can see the benefits of it. But I need my space and I need my sleep. There were a couple of times Paisley slept with us (rough night, sickness) and 2 different times I actually rolled on top of her and Jon had to wake me up so I didn’t continue to smother our child. Stella spent more time in our bed, but really out of convenience for breastfeeding, and not enough for me to refer to myself as a bedsharer. It’s just not our groove. From 6 months to a year both Paisley and Stella would wake up at 7 and if I nursed her in bed and kept her there she would sleep until 9. I resolved with both that if she needed to sleep with me from 7-9 AM until she was 14 and that meant I got to sleep til 9 it was worth it. Both my girls slept in our room until they were 6 months. I don’t mind sharing a room at all and absolutely advocate for that!
- Crying it out: I’m totally for it within reason. I don’t think brand new babies are trying to manipulate their parents…but i remember thinking that in my zombie-like state!! I feel very blessed because for the most part both my girls really did only cry when they needed something-they had a reason to cry. Once whatever it was was resolved, they were usually fine. I hope so much all my babies are that way. There have been a couple of nights with them when everything had been resolved, they had been held and loved on and still needed to cry..and so we let them. I think it was a good thing. (this was well past 6 months old and for 5-15 minutes usually, any younger and any longer I think there are other issues) They are both very good self-soothers.
- Baby-wearing: I love. I have a small collection of slings and wraps and I really think baby-wearing is the way to go. Once again, when I read up on attachment parenting and baby-wearing before having a child I thought it was crazy. Why in the world would you want to continue to be carrying a child after you finally don’t have to (because you’re not prego anymore). That is how I got things done. I love having a happy baby and my hands free. Nursing is super easy and discreet. And carrying around the dang carseat with the child in it makes it tooooo heavy!! I wore each to church for the first 3-6 months and she slept the entire time! And a big bonus-no one touches your child when you’re wearing them so you don’t have as many of the creepy old people wanting to touch and kiss your child. I read up so much research about the countries where people wear their babies and their complete lack of colic and I think that’s what sold me. (colic scares me) So I love baby-wearing. *side note: I will however lug the carseat around with me when the car is 110 degrees or super cold so the temperature stays regulated AND if I’ve got a sleeping baby that really doesn’t want to be disturbed.
- Diapers: I hate the earth and I love disposable diapers. It’s cool, you can judge me.
- Baby food: With my first we bought baby food. Once I discovered that most baby food was just the mashed veggie and bottled (no preservatives or additives) I didn’t really worry about it. She was eating table food by the time she was 9ish months too so it wasn’t really a big deal. With my second we bought baby food for a week…and then she ate table food. We were eating a better diet at the point she started eating (around 6 months) so I wasn’t really worried about just mashing up or handing her what we were eating. I cannot recommend this enough!! Both of my girls LOVE feeding themselves and just letting them eat whatever we eat really promotes that.
I know there’s more hot topics that I’m forgetting…but this is long enough for today.