Monday, October 22, 2012

October 22nd

I have some new reading material.

Not because there's been any movement in the adoption process- we're still waiting on the house to get rented- but because I seem to have moved into a new phase of preparing.

The first is a massive tome, The Baby Book: Everything You Need to Know About Your Baby, by Dr. Sears.

I ordered this book for two reasons. First, it popped up with multiple good reviews when I googled baby books. Secondly, it was not titled The Birthing Book: Everything You Need to Know About Giving Birth.

I understood that it was written from the point of view of attachment parenting, but I thought, as the book was about babies and not giving birth, I would be able to use the tips therein.

So I was bemused when I went on to actually read the book. Entire chapters were of no use to me, like chapter two: Ten Tips for Having a Safe and Satisfying Birth, the most important of which is actually getting pregnant in the first place.

Other chapters, like chapter four: Getting the Right Start with Your Newborn, seemed specifically designed to devastate me with its list of incredible moments of incredible importance that I would probably not have with my newborn.

I was hoping to sort of avoid all this by not purchasing a book about giving birth.

I ended up just skipping directly to Chapter 5. Postpartum Family Adjustments and settled in happily to learn about newborns and nesting.

Until I reached the next chapter, which was entitled: Loving, Attached Mothers Breastfeed and How to Breastfeed and if You Don't Breastfeed God Help You.

Okay, I kid, but only slightly.

Fortunately, I also ordered the book, Raising Adopted Children, by Lois Melina. She has a chapter titled: Bonding and Attachment, which I read with the desperation of one starved for a glimmer of hope.

She did not disappoint, getting straight to the point in the section titled simply: Adoptive Families Do Form Attachments.

Phew! Brow wiping moment.

She goes on to write:

"Though there is much controversy in the attachment field, this point- that infants can just as easily form attachments with foster parents and adoptive parents- is virtually undisputed. Furthermore, because learned trust is the basis for attachment, attachment experts say that giving birth to a child does not predispose the child to attach to the biological parent or give the biological parent any kind of "head start" in developing attachment.

"Early contact between a parent and child can get attachment off to a good start, but experts on infant care discourage parents from thinking of attachment as something that happens instantaneously. The fact is, it often takes time before biological or adoptive parents feel their child is an irreplaceable part of their lives; it takes time for the child to think of his parents as special people who are not interchangeable with any others."

Who knows what will happen at the hospital when my child is born.

Will I be in the birthing room or in the waiting room?

I don't know.

Will I hold my child right after he or she is born, or wait half an hour, two hours, four hours?

I don't know.

When will we take our baby to the hotel room? Will we take our baby home, or will the birth mother change her mind?

I don't know.

The most basic assumptions for others are simply open questions for us.

On a cuter note, how adorable are these outfits?

Note the adorable bear faces on the feet of the onesie outfit.
This is the best we've been able to do in terms of gender neutral, by the way. I think they're meant to be for boys, but if we have a girl, she'll be one cool little chick.