My first is almost 7 weeks old (ignore my ticker- it won't update!) and I've been pretty AP with her since birth. She tends to sleep on one of us at all times: on Spouse's chest at night, tummy to tummy with me in the mornings, up against me (in whatever position that is) when she falls asleep nursing, and sometimes in the k'tan for naps. Occasionally at night we lie her down, swaddled, in the bed with us- we have an angled crib mattress (she has reflux so we can't lie her flat) in the bed- but even then she is right up against one of us. The only time she sleeps alone is when she falls asleep in the car seat during a long car ride. In addition, she spends most of the day being held by one of us. I really only put her down to eat and go to the bathroom, or when she's getting her diaper changed. If we put her down (and we aren't right there) once she's asleep, she either wakes up right away or will stay asleep for only a few minutes and then wake up.
I do try to remember to do tummy time with her at least once a day (though it definitely doesn't happen every day), but that's only for a few minutes at a time and I'm right there. I usually put my face there and talk to her instead of putting toys out (which is another thing my mom keeps saying, that she needs things (toys) to look at). But she doesn't really like tummy time much so when I do try to do it, she doesn't last long. And she tends to go all over the place since we have to use the angled mattress thing so when she moves she squirms and ends up sliding down.
My mom called me today and the baby was napping on me, which I told her when she asked what the baby was doing. She started to give me a hard time about how I never put her down and how that isn't good for her and how important it is for her development. I kind of brushed her off, so she sent me this message later on:
"I would never tell you not to hold her, she needs all the love and attention you can give her, but she also needs to grow and get strong and learn, and she can't do that in your arms. You've never done this before, please listen to me, lying down is also important and believe it or not teaching her how to be independent and self reliant. Its not to neglect her but to help her grow."
The independent/self reliant thing I know isn't an issue, and that attached children end up more independent and self reliant, but the other part has started to concern me. Am I really impeding her growing and getting strong by not letting her use her muscles because she's always being held?! I never considered this and now I'm worried. Especially since last time we saw the pediatrician, she told us we need to make sure she starts looking and resting her head to the right, because she prefers her left side and has full range of motion on that side but not the other. So we've been coaxing her to look at us when changing her diaper (we are on her right side when she's on the changing pad) and holding her on our left side so she has to look right to look up at us.
Honestly, I've been feeling like I put her down too much as it is. And now I don't know what to do or think. Help?