Week 4

The honeymoon is over! Many mums have told us that around week four they felt a loss of confidence in their mothering abilities.

Take stock – you’re four weeks in and doing a great job, but broken nights take their toll. Get some support on board if you can and remember, no one knows your baby better than you.

Lack of sleep can befuddle and distort our perception of reality! Read yourself to sleep on the Durham University Sleep Lab involving the study of mother and infant sleep patterns.

Gotta get out of this place!

Feeling a touch of cabin fever? It’s tempting just to stay indoors when your baby is going through a cranky period. Getting out makes a change of scene not only for you but for baby as well. It blows cobwebs away and often refreshes you both.

Joining a group can be daunting, but there is nothing like sharing with others in the same boat. You can do it!

Mums often mention that family and friends tell them they are ‘making a rod for their own back’.

What’s all this about? It’s hard when you feel that your loved ones are criticising your parenting . Cuddling and holding your little one gives them a sense of what love feels like and a sense of security. These early days and months do not come again – enjoy.

LINK: BirthChoiceUK

Check out this site to find out which sling is right for your little bundle – www.slingmeet.co.uk. You may also be able to meet up with other mums and ‘try before you buy’.

Trust your instincts and let ‘advice’ wash over you. This is your baby. Smile and nod, smile and nod at those offering their perspective and then do your own thing!

Routines and schedules can be useful but these do not apply in the early weeks and months. You need to get to know your little bundle to know what kind of pattern they respond to in order to develop any kind of routine.

Reduce your baby’s ‘startle response’ and resulting upset by giving them some warning that you are approaching – for instance, by chatting, singing or humming.

Picking your baby up and holding them in an upright position will help to calm your little one.

Getting to know your little one is all part of the adventure.  Here is a great video of baby conversations:

When singing, remind yourself of lullabies or silly songs you have forgotten. Learn some new ones and sing your heart out – you’re not on The X Factor and no-one but your baby is listening. Babies love our voices, regardless of what we think. Singing releases tension and also the hormone oxytocin, which calms us and our little ones. You never know, you may discover you have a hidden singing talent!

A lullaby

Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
How I wonder what you are!
Up above the world so high,
Like a diamond in the sky!
When the blazing sun is gone,
When he nothing shines upon,
Then you show your little light,
Twinkle, twinkle, all the night.
Then the traveller in the dark,
Thanks you for your tiny spark,
He could not see which way to go,
If you did not twinkle so.
In the dark blue sky you keep,
And often through my curtains peep,
For you never shut your eye,
Till the sun is in the sky.
As your bright and tiny spark,
Lights the traveller in the dark,
Though I know not what you are,
Twinkle, twinkle, little star.

And if you need a bit of backing music here is a gentle animation to inspire

People who say they sleep like a baby usually don’t have one. ~Leo J. Burke

Babies don’t usually have sleep problems, but we parents do. Follow your baby’s lead and sleep when they nap. Draw the curtains, lie down, sigh and relax each part of your body in turn. To find out more about how this can benefit you, chat to other mums, your partner, your health visitor or your GP.