Toddler Bonding and Story Time at Home

From the very beginning, Norton has always been his daddy’s boy.  I’ve speculated on reasons behind it, of course, and I have theories.  But even so, toddler bonding has been something that I’ve always struggled with.  Norton has never been an extremely cuddly child… and has actually been the anti-cuddler.  Had it not been for my mother-in-law telling me that the husband was the exact same way as a child (and is still really only cuddly with me, our dogs, and our boy), I’d have wondered if I was doing something wrong and that was why the toddler bonding wasn’t really happening.

(As for reasons that I suspect that Norton was always been his daddy’s first and foremost, I think the biggest is that during that “quiet awareness period” for the first hour after birth, Norton wasn’t with me.  I was getting sewn up from my c-section, and then I was just way too stoned from the anti-anxiety drugs they gave me because I felt like I couldn’t breathe after the spinal started.  He spent that entire time swaddled up and in his daddy’s adoring arms.  Which, really, is where I wanted our baby to be since I couldn’t be there.)

But now, toddler bonding is starting to happen.  And it’s pretty awesome.  Norton will snuggle up beside me from time to time when we watch Sesame Street.  He’ll lift my hand and put it in his hair because he likes the way I scratch.  If I hold my arms open for him, he’ll often run at me and throw himself into my arms… and he’ll even tolerate some hugs and kisses.  All of these things are awesome, but one really incredible thing has been happening before his nap.

He lets me read him a story.

I’ve always loved reading, and I’ve tried to get all of my kids to be readers.  I started buying them books before they were even born.  Norton, however, wouldn’t have anything to do with sitting still long enough for a story.  Actually, Norton wasn’t terribly interested in sitting still and letting someone else entertain him at all.  Ever.  And I think that might be why we’ve had some stressful times at the library.

But for the last few days, Norton has listened with rapt attention and actually paid attention when I’ve read him a story.  So far, it’s been simple little board books, like the Sesame Street one that was in his stocking.  I’m hoping today that we’ll try his big brother’s favorite childhood book, Green Eggs & Ham.  And I’m hoping that Norton will love it just as much as his big brother did.

About Suzi

Suzi is an American ex-pat living in British Columbia. She's a cloth diaper addict, wife, mom of three, and President of the Prince George chapter of Cloth for a Cause.

Comments

  1. My hubby and I are both avid readers, and I was anxious to make sure my baby was, too. So when the parenting books said to start reading to him at 6 weeks, I did . . . and was TOTALLY panicked when he had NO interest in books. I kept trying over the next few months, and he kept either not paying attention or swatting it away. Then we found out he needs glasses 😉 So that helped his personal interest in books, but he’s NEVER been interested in sitting with me to look at one. But if Daddy does bedtime . . . he’s all about sitting quietly and listening to a book 😉 And that’s fine with me. Daddy can do bedtime, Nathan will learn to love books, and I? I can sit at my computer for a little while and enjoy the silence 🙂

  2. So sweet, and interesting hearing it come from the other side. My daughter very much still sees me as #1 and Daddy is an acceptable substitute if I’m not around. As in, not in the house or in the yard. Sometimes it’s very wearing, but I see the sadness in his eyes when he asks her to come over for their special time (stories before bed) and she comes running to me, hiding her face in my legs. She doesn’t always reject him like that, but it definitely stings him. Here’s hoping that she will be more accepting when #2 comes around (and we can work on mama giving up #2 a little bit more often for daddy!)
    Bianca @ The Pierogie Mama recently posted…Pierogie Babies – 29 weeks and a few worriesMy Profile

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