I have said many times before that our first daughter was pretty much a 'textbook' baby. She rarely cried and she always self-soothed from the word go, so I never felt like I needed to comfort her much. She was always off exploring, happy to be by herself or with other people and never really suffered with the 'separation anxiety' that I had heard people talking about.
Our second daughter, is very much the opposite. She needs a lot of comforting all throughout the day.. she fights her naps, screams at bed time and cries if I leave the room or walk away from her.
It's a new experience for me. Reminiscing back to Sienna, I know we just used to put her in her cot, give her the dummy and leave the room. She'd fall asleep herself with no tears, maybe just a little murmur to herself as she drifts off.
Aria is very much a screamer and can get herself in a bit of a state. It's only me that can calm her. Her dad will try.. he'll be pacing up and down her darkened room, rocking her, singing her lullabies, trying a dummy, stroking her head, patting her back.. and nothing will help. I eventually can't stand the screaming anymore and take her from him. Instantly she quiets and places her head on my shoulder, nuzzling her nose right into my neck so she can feel the warmth of my skin and hear the beating of my heartbeat. She will drift to sleep instantly and I can place in her cot and there she will stay for a good few hours.
To have my second baby use me as a comfort came as quite a shock. It was overwhelming the fact that she needed me so much.. I felt a little bit suffocated as I was used to our first being so independent. It also caused me a little bit of anxiety... I use to panic when I had to be away from her at bedtime as I knew how much she would scream and how heart breaking her scream sounded. She is slowly getting better as she gets older but generally still needs rocking to sleep especially at nap times.
As she grows up and starts exploring more and becoming more independent, I'm holding onto the nap and bedtime cuddles and rocking. When she nuzzles in and our cheeks touch, when I feel like the warmth of her skin on mine and hear her soft breathing, it's the best feeling in the world and at that moment in time, being my baby's comfort is the most important job in the world.