For a parent, feeling immediately bonded with your newborn is not something that should be taken for granted. It’s sometimes not as easy as 1-2-3. Happily there are plenty of ideas out there to share if someone is looking for help. There are ideas to promote bonding between both parents and baby here and here, but it can also be as simple as a massage with sweet smelling baby lotion, wearing your baby in a sling, or taking a stroll in a face to face stroller.
As babies grow into toddlers, they take on a new persona of independence. They start wanting to try and walk, feed themselves, get themselves dressed, etc. As parents, so many of us have heard the phrase “I do it” from a toddler at one point or another. Amazing how such a tiny person can have such a loud voice. I find myself wondering, how do parents stay connected with their children and keep nurturing that initial bond as they scream for independence?
Time goes by so fast. Before you know it, your baby is five years old and heading to kindergarten. Amidst going to work and facing all life’s little challenges, DH and I have made an extra effort to stay closely bonded to our children. We choose to incorporate little ones into our own established hobbies or favorite past times and create new ones based on their personalities as well. For example, DH loves college basketball. To put his love into perspective for you, March was the only month off-limits when it came to planning our wedding date. Now with children we have the introduction of mini toy hoops and soft basketballs for playtime. Game time outs and commercial breaks are filled with mini slam dunks and tons of giggles from all three of the juveniles in the living room.
For me, I like to cook, so it’s fabulous for Baby and I to spend time together in the kitchen. We bake and create, and with every recipe we add hugs, kisses and giggles into the mix. From the child side, Baby is a lover of books. DH and I both make a point to fit in snuggle/reading time a few nights a weeks before bedtime. That face-to-face time is so important to Baby as well as for us as parents.
Making time for our children sometimes takes precedence over makin sure all the dirty dishes are in the dishwasher after dinner or folding that load of laundry that’s in the dryer, but to be honest…I am really ok with that.
How do you continue to bond with your child as they grow? Do you have any tips to share?