This post about bonding with baby has been brought to you by Boba. All thoughts and opinions are mine.
In +/- 10 weeks, we will be welcoming Baby #3 into our family. TEN weeks! It seems like so incredibly long, but I know the time will speed past, just as it did and has with the Captain and D. It seems that we have all this time in the world to plan, think, and prepare for Baby, but before we know it, they are turning 5, as the Captain is in about 6 weeks! I had it all planned out before the Captain was born. In my head, I knew exactly what I wanted everything to look like, but something I didn't plan for was making adjustments. Now, don't get me wrong, planning is so vital, as is educating ourselves to be able to make the best decision for our family, but I just wasn't prepared for the curve balls that the Captain would unknowingly throw our way. Our main focus was to bond as a family, but that got put on the back burner with jaundice, slow weight gain, and then, colic. We made it through and have an amazing bond with him now, but there are definitely things I would have done differently. Things I did do differently with D, and things we will do differently this time. That's the beauty of being blessed with more than one child…you get to try again…and know to be prepared for curveballs!
I think I would have to have about 10 more kids before I would call myself a parenting expert, so take everything with a grain of salt. Which gets me to the fact that you shouldn't take everything you read as the gospel truth and that it will work 100% for your family. As I've said since the beginning of this blog, all kids are different, all parents are different, you just have to find out what works for your family.
I have compiled a list of a few things that helped us with bonding as a family. We didn't do it the same way each time, and I'll explain further, but here are just a few tips to get you thinking.
1. Say no. Sounds rude to some people, and that's okay, but this is your body, your baby, your family. You have the right to say no. I know some people who enjoy the support of their family and friends and fifteen medical professionals, midwives, etc, but that's not us. Doctors, nurses, and midwives have to do what they have to do to make sure you and Baby are okay, but beyond that, you don't have to be checked by five residents while in labor, watched by lactation consultants in training once Baby gets here, or visited by everyone from your hometown. If you're COMFORTABLE with it, then that's fine, but just know that you can politely ask people to leave or ask the nurse, midwife, or your husband to not let anyone visit during certain hours. Too much stress and too many visitors can make you (more) tired and can interrupt bonding experiences. We always had a plan that no one would visit until after the baby was born, and then, it was only immediate family. And that worked for us. I think it will be especially important this time around because we have two boys who will want to bond with their little brother, too! To me, they should have priority before others. Brother bonding is important, too!
2. Kangaroo care or skin-to-skin contact. This is great for any newborn, but has been proven especially beneficial for preemies. This is something Dad can participate in, too! The warmth of skin-to-skin contact is great for Baby, and is a great way to bond!
3. Breastfeeding. I'm sensitive to this one, though, because I have friends that were not able to breastfeed their babies because of the medicine they were taking to keep them healthy. Breastfeeding is a great way to bond, it's clear, but mothers who have adopted, can't breastfeed due to the medications that could be transmitted through breast milk being unsafe for baby, have had surgery for breast cancer, or whatever the reason, skin-to-skin contact is just as effective for bonding purposes as breastfeeding. Do note that women who can't produce milk can still feed at the breast with a supplemental nursing system, but that is entirely up to the mother. . Breastfeeding does not have to be all or nothing. If you cannot breastfeed, your baby will be fine. Just love on them!
4. Wear your baby! This is something I didn't really embrace until D came along and I HAD to get up and take care of my 2 year old, too. Wearing your baby has so many great benefits. I mean, you "wear" your baby for 9+ months, why not continue after they're born? And carriers like the many options from Boba are comfortable, adjustable to grow with your baby, and help with that special parent-baby bond. The Boba Wrap is perfect for newborns and babies up through 18 months. Babies love the Boba wrap because it's like being in the womb again….sort of! What better way to bond with Mommy?
After your baby is too heavy or needs a different kind of carrier, the Boba has you covered with the Boba Air or Boba Carrier. There is an infant insert to use these carriers with infants, keep in mind. It's all about personal preference…and the preference of your baby, as well. But these carriers are good through toddlerhood, so let the bonding continue!
5. Read, sing, and talk to Baby. This is something any member of the family can do, and babies love it. The Captain loved to sing to his baby brother, and D loved to listen. Babies love the sound of human voices and the educational value is so worth it. And the best part…babies don't care what you talk about or how your voice sounds when you sing!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Boba. The opinions and text are all mine.