I did not truly grasp the necessity – or the satisfaction that came with it – in bonding with my baby until she was born and I held her for the very first time. However, although the bonding started that day in the delivery room, it did not end there. Bonding with your baby is so important that you need to engage baby’s 5 senses as much as you can.
Bonding with your baby takes time. However, that process will most likely be one of the most rewarding occasions your life. The moments when your baby stops crying when she sees you walk around the corner, smiles at you for the very first time, and falls asleep comfortably in your arms or on your shoulder are priceless. They’re all indications that your baby feels safe and loved in your care and loving embrace.
These are all signs that you’ve bonded with your child.
In these treasured first weeks of life, your baby responds to you using all five of her senses. Listed below are some ways to interact with her in each and make sure the emotional attachment you create together with your baby is wholesome – and rewarding – for each of you, parent and baby.
- Sound – Your child was listening to you talk, although muddled, in the womb for months before she was born. Chances are high she already recognizes the sound and tone of your voice. By talking gently to your child or singing lullaby’s to her, even if you end up out of her line of sight, you’re letting her know you’re there. She trusts your voice and each time she hears you, this activity bonds you to her. And it will not be long before she says something back to you like “dada” or “mama”.
- Touch – There’s little that soothes a baby more whenever you pick her up and hold her close. The safety she feels will increase every time you respond when she cries, rock her to sleep, or let her curl her hand around your finger. Additionally, research indicates there are various benefits to nurturing your baby with infant therapeutic massage. This may also be a wonderful time when it comes to bonding with your baby in enaging one of the 5 senses. Check into local classes and courses or use an online search to learn about the methods of infant massage that are safe and engaging for both parent and baby.
- Sight – Is there anything that can compare with the moment when your child locks her eyes with yours and breaks immediately into a smile? For me, it is the highlight of my day when my daughter’s smile brightens the room. Focusing your gaze on your baby sends the message that she has your full attention when bonding with your baby which is crucial for creating a bond that will last a lifetime. She will come to know that she’s the apple of your eye and making and keeping eye contact reinforces that she is the world to you.
- Taste – Of course, breastfeeding is the best way your baby will bond by means of taste. Mom’s milk has a distinct taste that she instantly becomes accustomed to because that taste is also her main nutrient supply. However, even when you do not breastfeed your baby, the formula you use will grow to be the tasting bond for you and your baby. Whereas it is true that anybody is able to feed a non-breastfed baby, when combined with the other four senses, your baby will really feel safe while you’re the one holding the bottle.
- Smell – Everyone of us have a unique scent to our bodies and it does not take long for your child to know yours. It’s especially vital not to put on perfumes around your child which may turn her off from you or trigger you to be unrecognizable to her. Fresh and clean is best when it comes to bonding with your baby and it promotes a more familiar – and gentler – environment for your baby.
The opportunity to bond with your new baby lasts for only a very short time and then, like a leaf in the wind, it is gone, forever. Whatever you do, take advantage of every second and savor the special time you have when bonding with your baby.