After bub’s arrival, your 16 weeks of maternity leave will be some of the most precious, special time you’ll spend with your newborn. It’s when you shower your sweetie with round-the-clock care, witness her reach exciting milestones while catching rare glimpses of her emerging personality.
This is also the perfect time to establish a strong bond with your little one so that you are always her go-to person when she needs some comfort and love. Setting up playdates and signing up for baby classes are an excellent way to bond with bub. But there are also plenty of things you can do in the comfort of your own home that’ll keep the connection going so that both of you can experience more together! Here are a few our favourites…
Baby massage Nothing can comfort your cutie more than mummy’s touch. Massage also helps your little one pass trapped wind (bye, bye colic!), improve their posture and promotes relaxation, helping them to sleep better (hello, extra hour of shut eye!). Maintain eye contact with every slow, soft stroke to keep things intimate. You can learn simple massage techniques by attending a few classes and continuing the exercises at home or you can even find easy-to-follow instructional videos on YouTube.
Wear your baby “Babywearing is a great practice for keeping baby happy and to help build a stronger bond between mom and her baby,” notes American paediatrician and parenting expert Dr William Sears, on his website, Ask Dr Sears. At the newborn stage, your young ’un wants nothing more than to be close to mummy and daddy, plus listening to your heartbeat is a natural soother for them. Buy a sturdy wrap or baby carrier and put your peewee in it while you go about your daily chores around the house and she will enjoy the closeness and warmth. It’s also an excellent way to calm down a cranky baby.
Maintain eye contact while feeding In addition to delivering nourishment, feeding time gives you a chance to connect and communicate with your cutie. While feeding, take this time to snuggle up, read your little’s ones facial expressions and her body language. This will help you read her better and you will be more prepared at figuring out what she wants.
Sleep together The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends babies sleep in the same room as their parents on separate sleeping surfaces, to gain the benefits of night-time attachment. Snoozing together also means you can respond quickly to your kewpie’s need. You can either move the crib into your room or use a bedside bassinet that attaches safely to your bed, so bub is at arm’s length but still in a safe sleep environment. If you decide to co-sleep in the same bed, make sure you have a big enough bed (queen- or king-sized) and that one side of the bed is against the wall while mummy sleeps on the other side.