“… I knew I loved you before I met you // I think I dreamed you into life // I knew I loved you before I met you // I have been waiting all my life … “
This song has painted the feelings of many mothers-to-be so accurately. Since the moment the stick turned blue, many mothers-to-be fall head over heels in love with the little person they’re growing inside their bodies. Many… but not all.
Some women experience the wonders of the pregnancy journey and yet are guilt-ridden because they haven’t really fallen in love with their baby. It’s as if it’s an unspoken rule for mothers-to-be fall instantly in love with their unborn child. Well, we’re here to tell you that there’s no such rule. Love comes to everyone naturally, and at its own pace. Reality hits and love bites at different phases of the pregnancy journey; it’s different for every mothers-to-be. Some experience love early on, instantly upon knowing that they’re with a child; others when they hear the baby’s heartbeat for the first time, others when they discover the sex of the baby; others experience it much, much later, like when they hold the baby in their arms for the very first time; and some women experience it three to six months postpartum.
There’s no telling when the love bug will bite you, but we’ve never met a mother who didn’t fall helplessly in love with the baby she grew inside her body. Wash away that guilt, Mama. Just because you aren’t feeling the joyful pangs of pregnancy at this very moment, it doesn’t make you any less of a mother – no matter what society (or even that negative part of your brain) says.
We believe that love grows with familiarity. As your body undergoes rapid changes and as you experience some unpleasant, albeit still wonderful, transitions on your pregnancy journey, take this time to familiarize yourself with the bump and try to forge a connection with the one living inside. Here are a few tips you can try to bond with your bump:
Baby Bonding Tip #1: Use Your Voice
Spend some time each day talking to your baby, telling her about the things you will do together, and how you are feeling that day. You may find that your baby responds to the sound of your voice, and begins kicking and nudging you as you talk.
Baby Bonding Tip #2: Go To Yoga
Prenatal yoga classes give you a chance to escape the humdrum of daily life, and focus on your pregnancy for a while.
Baby Bonding Tip #3: Get Dad Involved
It’s not just you who wants to develop a lasting bond with your baby – dad-to-be will want a slice of the action too! Let him respond by rubbing your bump in the same spot.
Baby Bonding Tip #4: Take Bump Photos
As you compare the bump photos from each week, you will be able to see how much your baby is changing and growing during the pregnancy. This visual reminder may help to make the pregnancy seem more real, and will give you time to reflect upon the changes occurring. Do a pregnancy photo shoot towards the end of your pregnancy can make you feel special too, where yourself and your partner (or yourself alone) can have some gorgeous moments captured by a professional, that you will no doubt treasure forever.
Baby Bonding Tip #5: Slow Down
Yes, there is a lot to do before the baby arrives, but you don’t need to do it all today. Delegate where you can, and don’t feel bad getting help around the home, it’s very common these days! Accepting offers of help can really take a load off, and remember, people wouldn’t offer if they didn’t want to help.
Bonding is a complex, personal experience that takes time. There’s no magic formula and it can’t be forced. As you become more comfortable with your baby bump and your new routine becomes more predictable, you and your partner will feel more confident about all of the amazing aspects of raising your little one.Focus on your good points and if you don’t feel like you’re bonding with your unborn baby yet, don’t beat yourself up.