Set your goals high but not your expectations. ~Dove

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Speaking of Love

A couple of months ago I stopped breast feeding my son, he was 13 months at the time.  I stopped because he was ready to move on.  He enjoyed cuddling before bed but he preferred to have a few sips from his sippy cup and then go back to cuddling with me.  At first I had a hard time with the transition but I was listening to his cues, and because he was okay with it, so was I. 

We started to develop other nightly rituals before going to bed.  Instead of nursing I would cradle J and snuggle him up in his blanket and talk to him softly.  I would talk to him about the day we had.  I would mention whether we had a really fun day and point out some key memories that would hopefully stick out in his mind.  If I asked him if he remembered a particular memory, he'd say Yah.  I also started teaching him to say, I Love You.  I would say it in a sing-song way and emphasize the 'youuuuuu'.  He loved it and would giggle for as long as I would say it. 

Then we'd be in the car, maybe to daycare or maybe to the grocery store.  It would be something to do and make it seem like a fun sing-song game.  I'd look through the review mirror and sing the 'I love youuuu' again and again.  Each time J would giggle with excitment. 

Eventually J started saying it back to me, the way most babies like to mimic.  But when he says it back to me, he's yelling it: "Uv Uoh".  We'd say it back and forth and giggle the whole time.  Then a few weeks ago he started saying it back to me as I dropped him off at daycare.

This morning was the first time that my silly putty came to me to tell me he loved me.  I was in the kitchen preparing his lunch and snacks for daycare.  He was babbling in the other room and looking out the front window.  I didn't pay too much attention until I heard him constantly yelling "Uv Uoh, Uv Uoh" over and over until I acknowledged him.  He had a huge grin on his face and standing in the doorway.  I could feel his love in that smile.  It was the first time that I honestly think he was telling me how he felt, rather than play the game.
playing in our backyard

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