If this is your first time, your child will make a huge difference in your life. Inevitably, your family’s routine will revolve around his schedule and your thoughts will take over the responsibility of taking care of him.
Raising a child is not as complicated as it seems, but it is so easy for a new mother to do the right thing that she misses out on enjoying her childhood. Make up your mind from the start to enjoy your baby. Be confident that what you and your partner feel instinctively may be true. Motherhood time is a special time that is set aside every day to get to know each other. A child cannot understand the words you say, but if you talk to him softly, he can tell you in your tone of voice that you think he is the coolest child in the world! Gradually, he will respond to you with smiles and cooing sounds. You will eagerly look forward to that precious half hour or so every day. Your husband may also want to take a turn with the baby now and then. If you let him fend for himself, he will become very adept at holding diapers, and it is good if the child gets used to being handled by someone other than his mother.
Breastfeeding is the greatest joy in life for a baby and sucking is the only skill he is born with. But this isn’t the only physical act of sucking – it’s the close, intimate contact with his mother that he finds so satisfying. Cuddle him close to you at feeding times, whether he’s breastfed or bottle fed.
Breast milk has all the advantages. It’s safe, germ-free, easy to digest, and always at the right temperature. It saves hours of time and labor, costs nothing and increases the quantity to meet the child’s requirements. The key to successful breastfeeding is a calm and peaceful atmosphere. Wash your hands before feeding and see that you are relaxed and comfortable. Apply the baby to both breasts at each feeding, starting with the right and then the left instead. This ensures that at least one breast is emptied at each feeding, thus stimulating the production of more milk. As a guide, ten minutes at each breast is an average time, but young babies usually fall asleep before the twenty minutes are up, and larger babies may take all the milk there in half the time. After feeding, keep the nipples clean with a cotton pad or cotton ball.
Your baby will grow even if you don’t breastfeed him. It’s a disappointment, but not a disaster. So which milk do you choose? Powdered milk is widely used, convenient and safe. Fresh milk will do, when boiled and softened. Evaporated milk is increasingly popular. Choose what you want and stick to it. If something goes wrong, it’s probably the strength or quantity that needs to be changed, not the brand. When using powdered milk, it is best to mix the feed immediately before use, as the fat separates out when left to stand. But if you adjust the days of feeding and keep it in the refrigerator, be sure to shake it well before use, so that the fat is evenly distributed.
Feed the baby yourself as often as you can and never leave him with the bottle propped up at his side. Not only is it dangerous, but it robs him of the much-needed rest.