Sunday, July 19, 2009

More on Lullabies

Last week's lullaby column has touched a "chord" with our readers! Thank-you, everyone, for your lovely comments. Many of you shared your favorite lullabies with me and Roberta Baye told me about her enjoyment of singing lullabies to the little ones in the baby room at Tender Learning Center.

One of the important parts of singing a lullaby to a baby is how the act of humming or singing is helpful and calming to the parent or caregiver. A crying or colicky baby in our arms creates a need to "DO SOMETHING!" However, at that very moment we may have exhausted all the possibilities we think we have. The anguish of not being able to help, to fix the problem, creates tension and anxiety in our own bodies. That tension is subtly communicated to our child. Sometimes our communication is not so subtle and we do things we are not proud of . yelling or worse.

But there is something very valuable we can do for our child and for ourselves. This something takes self-awareness, trust, and patience. Start humming a quiet song, don't start with words. Neither you nor your child has need of the words right now. It will only add confusion to an already chaotic moment.

If you can do this, you will become more aware of your own feelings and need to help your child. While you hum you can think. You will begin to think and to trust that the crying will not last forever. You will begin to trust your instinct that the very best thing you can do is what you are doing. You will need patience to do this, but in return you will become more patient, more trusting, and more aware. It is love made real by your actions not words.

Toad House Publishing

Twinkletime Rhymes to Print

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