When I gave birth to my son – nearly a decade ago! – I couldn’t touch or hold him right away like what has been suggested by experts.
There was no immediate bonding experience as he was whisked away to NICU from being born 5 weeks early and needed assistant in breathing. I laid there helplessly as I worried sick about how he was doing as the nurse and doctor worked to put me back together after an emergency c-section.
I had a severe preelampsia during my pregnancy.
I was only able to saw him well after midnight from my hospital bed that was taken into the NICU by nurses. I could only touch his little hand while fighting back tears.
Took 3 long excruciatingly painful days until I was able to finally hold him in my arms.
We had a late start on the bonding thing but we quickly picked it up.
The Power of Smell and Touch for Your Baby
I was so scared to give my premature baby a bath at first. He was so tiny when he finally got to come home with me after a week in the hospital. It was my ex husband who bravely gave the first bath as I watched carefully from the side.
As I got to feel more comfortable in giving him a bath, it became our little daily ritual. It was beautiful!
He would get a little massage from me which he love as it relaxes him and prepared him for bed time. I still remember the lovely smell of minyak telon. Minyak telon is traditional Indonesian aromatic oil that is frequently used to moisturize babies’ bodies and help prevent gassiness, fussiness, and colic. It also keeps the body rather warm. It has gentler smell than wintergreen oil or eucalyptus oil.
I guess maybe that’s why he loves massages until this very day. Almost a decade later hah!
I didn’t realize how important it is for the baby’s development. It goes far beyond bonding with babies. Take a look at this amazing infographic! Fascinating isn’t it?
5 Tips on Creating More Bonding Experience
- Cuddles and lots of cuddles! After all, cuddling with your baby is one of the best thing in life!
- Set aside some times during the day. For example: make bath time your special moment. After bath time give your baby a gentle massage that will help them relax.
- Sing to your baby. Baby loves their mother’s voice and can recognize it instantly.
- Wear your baby. Baby wearing brings mom and baby so much closer because of the skin to skin contact. Invest in great and safe baby carrier/sling.
- Get the father involved! This will create a sense of bonding between the two of them and you will get that much needed mom break.
Those precious moments with the baby will be something you will miss once they get bigger and more independent. I sure do miss the peaceful feelings of having a baby.
How about you? Do you have a special bonding rituals for you and your baby/child?