Another fabulous guest post, this one from my sweet friend Emily. Em has chronicled the adoption process and her first few months at home with her darling boy, Ezra, at Our Little Buster.
Emily spends a good bit of time thinking and writing about attachment; this post is a beautiful example. Thank you Em, for sharing it with us.
Long before I became a mom I marveled at how a mother could make her baby stop crying by just holding him. I think everyone has witnessed a moment where a family member or friend is holding someone’s baby and the baby starts to cry or fuss. That person will then hand the baby back to the mom and instantly the crying stops. The baby feels safe and secure again just from their mother’s touch. I always thought that was beautiful and wanted to be that safe and secure person for a child. As an adoptive parent, I knew that it would take some time and some work to get Ezra to that point. I would say Ezra felt safe with us from fairly early on but I am not sure that he actually preferred us or that we were able to provide true comfort when he was upset. Several of my adoptive mom friends told me to give it time and that it would come. Patience is not one of my strengths and I so longed to be Ezra’s person of comfort. Waiting for those signs of attachment has been hard.
Last week I took Ezra to his 9 month well visit at the doctor. I knew he would be getting more shots as our doctor explained that at our previous visit. When we went to the doctor the first time we were able to get him to calm down with a bottle. He cried until we got to the waiting room and then as soon as he had the bottle he was fine. For this most recent visit I was taking him by myself so I had the same plan of attack. The nurse came in to give him his shots and I started to get the bottle ready. Of course he started screaming while he got the shots and then the nurse picked him up while I finished pouring the bottle. He continued to cry as the nurse held him. I got my stuff together and the nurse handed Ezra back to me. I fully expected him to continue to cry until I got that bottle in his mouth. Do you know what happened? He stopped. He looked at me and sniffled a bit but he stopped. The nurse said, “Well, look at that. He just needed his mama.” I almost gave the nurse a hug. I held him tight and hugged him and he was back to his silly self. I was his person. And it felt amazing.