Seeing your bub on the ultrasound screen and feeling those first fluttery movements are magical moments that make it all start to seem real! Beginning the process of bonding with your baby is an important part of your journey into motherhood. But how can you actually go about doing it before your baby is born? Here are some ideas to get you started…
From around 23 weeks your baby can hear sounds from outside the womb. Talk and sing to your baby. Your baby loves your voice and will respond instantly to it when they are born. If you’re not sure what to say, try reading books to your baby instead.
Perhaps you might like to play music. Interestingly if you play a particular song regularly you often find that your baby responds by relaxing when they hear it once they are born (this is a handy sleep-trick!!)
Everyone loves a massage, including your baby. Get some oil or cream (check it’s safe for pregnancy first – if in doubt go for organic coconut oil) and lather it over your bump. Maybe Daddy would like to get involved in this too?
As those flutters turn into full-blown kicks respond to your baby’s movements by touching your belly and you might feel her kicking into your hand – this is a particularly special way of communicating with your baby.
Meditation and visualisation are powerful tools. Our Pregnancy Yoga classes include both guided meditation and visualisation to help you bond with your baby. Once you have learnt these tools, you can do it by yourself at home.
Keep a photo of your ultrasound scan on your phone (maybe change your screensaver to it!) so you can see your baby easily.
Take some us-time
Our lives move at such a fast pace these days. Take some regular time out to honour this special time in your life and just ‘be’ with your baby. Perhaps you could have a bath, go for a swim, a walk, attend pregnancy yoga, or just sit quietly in the park at lunchtime.
Give your baby a name
Even if you haven’t decided on the actual name yet, you can still give your baby a nickname. Bean and Peanut are popular ones, or come up with your own.
Document your journey
When they are old enough to appreciate it, a journal of their early years is a beautiful gift to give your child. Why not start by journaling about your pregnancy? This gives you the opportunity to reflect as well. You could also take a series of selfies to document how your body is changing as your pregnancy progresses and include them in the journal.
Belly art is becoming more popular and is a fun thing to do with older children, your partner or at your Baby Shower! You can paint on your belly (using chemical-free body paints), either something fun or beautiful. Have a look on Google Images for inspiration. Or maybe create a henna mandala or get a cast made of your bump – there are kits available to buy online.
Remember you don’t need to do all of these things and some may come more naturally to you than others. For instance, it might feel odd for you to ‘talk’ to your baby, while touching and massaging your bump feels natural. You may have heard of the 5 languages of love – everyone has a bias towards a certain way of expressing their love, which could be by physical touch, buying gifts, quality time, words of affirmation, or acts of service. Similarly, you’ll have your own unique way of bonding with your beautiful bump.
Over to you, how do you bond with your bump? Leave a comment below.