Friday, May 25, 2012
Even though Silas seems to be doing really well with attaching to us as his parents, we have chosen to co-sleep with him for awhile. Not sure how long we will continue this, I guess until our instincts tell us that he is feeling completely safe and secure in knowing that we will always be there for him as his parents.
Starting to co-sleep with a four year old can feel a bit strange, especially for the child! He was used to sleeping in his own bed at his foster family's home, and didn't want to sleep with me in China. He would scoot over to the very edge of the bed, closer to Micah's cot, while we were in Changsha, trying to get away from me. But I wasn't about to give in. The first few mornings I would wake up and would find him in Micah's bed.
When we got to Beijing, Silas really didn't have a choice about sleeping with me, since there was only one King sized bed for the three of us to share. Lucky Mama, got to sleep crammed between two little boys! But each night, Silas would slowly inch closer and closer to me, until he was even snuggled up right against my chest.
Now that we are home, he is sleeping in bed with Tim and I. We lay down with him each night as he falls asleep and we can see that this gives him great security. He did wake up one night, after we had left the room, sobbing with fear and anxiety that we were gone and it breaks our hearts to see him like this. But after that first night, he seems to have realized that we are still there, even if we aren't in the room with him. Last night, he was sad because Tim got home from work late and wasn't there to lay down with us. Luckily, Tim got home a couple of minutes after we laid down to go to sleep, and Silas wrapped his arms around him with great relief.
I believe that when adopting an active four year old boy, who runs around all day playing with his siblings, this co-sleeping is vital for attachment with his parents. It is really the only down time we get with him, without all the other children around, and we see how important this is to his heart as well.
We may not like co-sleeping, but we see the need for it and the changes it is bringing to Silas and his fears of change and abandonment. I would encourage all parents of newly adopted children to try it, as strange as it may feel. The attachment goes both ways and no matter what happens throughout your day, we always fall in love with our children more when we watch them sleep!