Your milk has ‘come in’ and you and your little bundle are learning the dance of feeding. It takes two to tango and two to get to know each other and work together to get feeding established.
Babies need to learn how to breastfeed and mums are also learning a new skill. Remember how long it took you to learn to ride a bike, drive a car? It takes time, so get help and support if the going gets tough (from organisations such as NCT and La Leche – see our links section in the footer of this page).
Take a deep breath and exhale slowly and drop your shoulders – maybe several times
Here are a few positive phrases to help you believe in yourself:
- My body knows just what to do
- My baby knows when he or she needs milk
- I keep breathing deeply and listen to my instincts
- This, too, will pass
- I am not alone, I know where to get the support I need
- Each new day is a first day and every day is different
- I know my baby better than anyone else
Babies may be our teachers but mothers are the expert in knowing their baby. Trust your instincts. If it feels wrong it probably is wrong for you and your baby. If it feels right and comfortable, it will be right and comfortable for you.
Your named health visitor will visit you at home. A health visitor is a qualified nurse who is also a public health practitioner trained in family health and, in particular, in normal health and development of babies and the under fives. She is another great resource, who runs ‘well baby’ clinics, who can point families towards other mainstream and specialist services, and who also works closely with general practitioners and other community services.
Remember your little one has not ready any books or manuals!
Seek out various local groups, including those who offer breastfeeding support or baby massage, and NCT coffee meets as well as children’s centres, These give you the chance to reconnect with and gain the support of other mums and dads.
It’ s not over ’til the fat lady sings. While adjusting to your new family life with your bundle there are many joys:
- Admire and be amazed at the wonderful baby you have made
- Revel in your baby’s smell and softness of their skin
- Enjoy getting to know your little bundle
Becoming a parent for the first time is a place of conflicting advice , so trust yourself and if it feels right it will be right for you.
Worrying about the future? Someone once said, the only way to deal with the future is to function efficiently in the now. Tomorrow will take care of itself.
Broken sleep goes with the territory. Accept that this is necessary as your little bundle needs to feed frequently and has a tiny tummy (only 75ml at ten days old). Check out our breastfeeding tips for more info
Frequent feeding has been shown to be a protective factor in preventing sudden death. Find out more by clicking this link.
There is no wrong way to breastfeed your baby!
Looking for a lullaby?
HUSH LITTLE BABY
Hush little baby don’t say a word
Papa’s gonna buy you a mockingbird
And if that mockingbird won’t sing,
Papa’s gonna buy you a diamond ring
And if that diamond ring turns brass,
Papa’s gonna buy you a looking glass
And if that looking glass gets broke,
Papa’s gonna buy you a billy goat
And if that billy goat won’t pull,
Papa’s gonna buy you a cart and bull
And if that cart and bull turn over,
Papa’s gonna buy you a dog named Rover
And if that dog named Rover won’t bark
Papa’s gonna buy you a horse and cart
And if that horse and cart fall down
You’ll still be the sweetest baby in the town.
Gently exercise focusing on your pelvic floor and lower abdominals will help regain muscle tone. Pushing a pram and a daily walk with your baby will also help as part of a gentle exercise routine.
Pelvic floor exercises are a must, boring as this may seem. Sit on your gym ball if you have one (particularly if you have a sore front bottom) and practise.
Avoid watching the news on the television, particularly before bedtime. Keep the world’s disasters and troubling news out of your safe secure nest and let others deal with them.
Work with your little one, watch and observe their behaviour. All babies go through these distinct behavioural states in this order:
- Quiet – deep sleep
- Active – light sleep
- Wakeful – transitional state, drowsy
- Quiet alert
- Active alert
Babies can be easily over-stimulated and become cranky and fussy. They haven’t yet learnt how to settle themselves.. Try to reduce the number of friends and relatives handling your baby at family gatherings and at other times. Overstimulation = a cranky, unsettled baby and an unsettled mum and dad.