This piece is brought to you by Medela but is 100% my own words and newborn land story.
When you grow a baby, give birth to a baby, breastfeed a baby and live and breathe a baby, it can be tough for the dad to get a look in.
My partner Sam has been a hands-on dad from day one BUT, in the early days there really was only so much he could do. Most men are not massive fans of the newborn phase cause, for the most part, it’s about the mum and the bub, oh if only a man’s teet could lactate as well, just imagine the load that could be shared!
Because I breastfed for the first few months; the lions share naturally fell on me. Because of this, I bonded really quickly with our babies but it was trickier for Sam, so we started to do a few things that really helped him bond with both of our boys. It worked a treat for us the first time around, so when we went for number two, we did the exact same things and it helped to give me a rest and Sam some awesome one on one time.
If we are bonkers enough to go for round three, we will absolutely do these again.
- Bath ze baby- It is SO delicious bathing a newborn baby. This used to settle our boys so much; a nice warm bath or better yet a shower. The sound of running water is similar to the noise in the womb, so it would calm our squawkers immediately and that skin on skin nuzzle is to die for. Every night Sam would bath or shower our newborn bub and that time is still something he talks about.
- Massage ze baby- Post bath, when the baby is all chilled and squeaky clean, a massage is a really beautiful way for a dad to connect and get to know the baby better. Sam loved this nighttime ritual. While they were doing this, I would usually sit on the couch and chill, watch some trashy reality tv and express.
- Express ze boob- There is something so special about feeding a newborn. Although I had a little trouble breastfeeding, I eventually got there and loved that closeness with my boys. I also LOVED a break from it as well and expressing gave me a little much-needed freedom. I would express a few times a week and hop into bed earlier while Sam would give our baby a night time bottle. He LOVED this so much. Just gazing into our babies eyes and watching them fall to sleep is such a yummy way to connect. I used the Medela Swing and this is ze bee’s knees of expressers. I used a Medela pump in the hospital and literally stopped by a baby shop on our first trip home to grab one. It pumps nice and quickly, is painless and is top notch quality. Using the Medela Swing also gave Sam and I a bit of freedom in the early days if we wanted to go out for dinner. I would pump and hand over the breast milk and baby to my mum. We also used the Medela baby bottles which I reckon are the best.
- Walk ze baby: Every weekend I would sleep in and Sam would pop our baby in the pram and do laps of our town. It was their time to be together and it suited me cause there is nothing more fabulous than SLEEP!*
These are just the small little things we did in the early days, but I swear by them. It’s so important for dads to feel that connection early on. Ooooh, all this chat is making my ovaries squeal.
*Medela has the most awarded range of breast pumps in Australia! The reason mums vote for Medela is due to their research-backed technology that uses 2 phase technology which mimics the babies’ natural sucking rhythms allowing mum to express more milk in less time. Medela have a range of breast pumps; from the manual Harmony breast pump ideal for occasional use, the Medela Swing which is a single electric breast pump for occasional pumping or the double electric Swing Maxi or the premium Freestyle model for frequently or exclusively expressing. The Medela Symphony pump also uses Symphony PLUS technology to stimulate the milk supply for mothers who are otherwise unable to feed their baby from the breast.