Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Affection

Welcome to the January Carnival of Natural Parenting: Learning from children

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month our participants have shared the many lessons their children have taught them. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.

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Hugs? Um…
Kisses? Um…
How about a handshake instead?

I didn’t grow up in an overly affectionate house. As adults now, we don’t typically hug or tell each other we love each other. We are more of a “Hey, what’s up?”, pat on the back, kind of family.

My friends will tell you that I am by no means a hugger. Hubby will tell you that I like my space. I am just not comfortable displaying affection. But with my own child? I think I might be smothering him.

Since his birth I have learned to embrace affection and I’m making huge strides in my comfort with others. It is with him that I am finally truly affectionate.

Now at 20 months old, if he wakes in the night or wakes up early, I just love bringing him into bed with us to cuddle. I love the warmth of his body against mine, the smell of his hair, the sound of his little snores. I’ve only recently noticed that I really miss nursing him and this precious connection we had. These cuddles help fill the void.

I LOVE YOU’s are constant in our house. When he is upset I stop him to say, I LOVE YOU, which can usually crack a smile and/or distract him for a minute. When he is being silly I can usually calm him down by telling him I have something very important to whisper in his ear, I LOVE YOU!

I love his slobbery kisses and his crashing-into-me hugs. I can’t stop tickling him and kissing his rosy cheeks. Sometimes I just can’t keep my hands off this poor kid!

My son has taught me so many things – but it has been through this newfound world of affection that I have learned the most.

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Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!


Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

(This list will be live and updated by afternoon January 11 with all the carnival links.)


19 comments:

  1. This post makes me feel warm and fuzzy :) No really - I've been a huggy person all my life, and now I have this delicious little person who loves to hug me back!! zomg!! I'm glad you've found your reason for smooches :)

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  2. I find that I'm the same way! I tell my 17 month old that I love her-- a lot. I love to snuggle with her (we're in the process of weaning, so I know that I'll miss that too). There is something about babies and toddlers that brings people together. When we were visiting my husband's grandma, his reclusive-hermit uncle (who never comes downstairs to visit) was always downstairs to visit when our baby was there. During the visit, she brought out smiles and laughter in everyone.

    My blog is http://oldnewlegacy.wordpress.com

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  3. Awwww. They are irresistible, aren't they? <3

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  4. Now that's a neat lesson and I'm so pleased that your LO has taught you something so profound that will stay with you for life. Thanks for a lovely post

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  5. so happy that you get to enjoy the kisses and hugs! at one, my son is BIG into giving unsolicited kisses to just about anyone, which is like the great equalizer: there's a tiny pucker coming your way -- how could you say no?! it was hard for me to get over my own less-affectionate inclination, but seeing how the littlest smooch can pick someone right up was a good motivator. really nice post!

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  6. I can definitely relate! I'm not much of a hugger either, except for when it comes to my kids.

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  7. I am so with you on this one! I like hugs and affectionate touch from friends and family – but I am so awkward about it, both in the giving and receiving. I don't know why this is, but I even had a roommate in college make fun of me about it, saying something, "Watch me hug Lauren and see how she gets all stiff and cringes!" It was such a relief for me to have a romantic connection, first, and then become a parent, because finally I have people in my life I can hug, kiss, hold hands with, give backrubs to, share laps, etc., without ever feeling like I might be doing it "wrong." :) It's so wonderful. As you said, I probably am smothering my son in touch, but he hasn't complained yet! :)

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  8. I'm so with you on this! What a nice thing it is. Our theme as a family this year is affection.

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  9. smothermother is not just a moniker. ;-)

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  10. I love you site! Mamahood has definitely brought out my affectionate side as well. I often joke that when my babies were born I became a "mama kitty" for a few days, I just couldn't stop nuzzling those newborn faces!

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  11. I know exactly how you feel! I was raised in a Scandinavian area where physical affection wasn't common. But I really learned to be affectionate with my two children whose first love language is physical touch (from the 5 Love Languages). My children taught me (and I think my whole family) that hugs are always wonderful!
    Deb @ LivingMontessoriNow.com

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  12. Aw, so sweet! Toddlers are the best for giving and receiving affection. Claire wants to kiss all our friends goodbye when they leave the house, and everyone goes all melty. It's hard to resist a toddler cuddle. :)

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  13. This was really touching. I understand exactly what you mean about the snuggling in the mornings. It is something I miss if he doesn't wake before I leave for work.

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  14. That's so beautiful. I too didn't come from an overly affectionate family, especially not on my mom's side. But as soon as I had kids I became very huggy and kissy. So I totally relate to this post!

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  15. Oh mama! I could have written this post. I am so there with you about affection and how my son has changed me.

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  16. Thank you everyone. I've enjoyed participating in my first Carnival of Natural Parenting.

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  17. So sweet!

    I just love it when my four-year-old hugs me. His arms are impossibly short and he throws them around my neck and smashes his chubby cheeks into mine.

    It's nice to think of how your son is bringing this same squishiness into your life! :)

    Blessings,
    Stacy
    (found you via the carnival!)

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  18. I know what you're talking about. When I had my first son I couldn't keep my hands off him either! He always loved hugs and still does! Motherhood is good for bringing out the softer side of a woman. Everything is just so precious. =)

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