Ayla, when she's half-asleep looking to nurse, looks just like a blind mole. It is the cutest thing. She keeps her eyes closed, but opens her mouth and starts rooting around with her head until I slip open my shirt and help her latch on to my breast. The moment this happens she visibly relaxes, and often sighs with contentment when the warm milk floods her mouth. When she's satisfied, she will often roll over and push her back up to me to snuggle right back to sleep. If it's morning and she's ready to get movin', she will either gaze into my eyes and start babbling, or if my eyes are still closed, sit up and bat playfully at my face.
When Camille and Sylvia were at this stage, they were much louder about it. Grunting, crying, or vocalizing until they were latched on. Camille resembled a baby bird, with her eyes closed, bopping her head, and chirping "eh, eh, eh". Sylvia was a little piglet grunting and snuffling her way to the breast.
Babies and children sleeping next to the warmth and safety of their parents is by far the most common sleeping arrangement around the world. Co-sleeping and breastfeeding enrich my life, as well as my children's. The ease of feeding Ayla without fully waking is so lovely, and these half-conscious moments are some of the sweetest moments that I get to experience daily. Even Camille, who has her own room, will often come lay across the foot of the bed at some point in the night to seek the warmth that we provide. I am not in any hurry to move my kids into their own beds, as I love snuggling with them so much. The one down-side is that our queen-size bed is not nearly big enough. For now, Papa can snuggle in (crowded), or sleep in a different room so he can stretch out, get to sleep early, and go to work well-rested. I think it works out OK all the way around. This is written in celebration of my family's choices, and is not meant as a judgement of anyone else's choices.
Here's to another year of each family enjoying their unique choices as we navigate through this life-journey!