However, I decided that it couldn't hurt to attend a series of classes on teaching new parents how not to kill their newborn. I figure some of this stuff I will already know (James said I was nodding my head and agreeing like a know it all lunatic last night, because I am SMRT), and some will be common sense, and some will be new to me. They can't hurt anyways!
Last night's class was all about Comforting. It focused on what is known as the Fourth Trimester, and how there are theories that human babies are actually born three months premature. We should, in fact, have another three months in the womb because we are not ready to transition into the cold, cruel world. The instructor said she thought we should be born with pouches, like kangaroos, so we can carry our babies skin to skin at all times. I'm glad I don't have a pouch, but I CAN see how that would be handy for putting things in...my phone, wallet, baby, etc.
You can see where this is going then? Yes. Skin to skin contact is very crucial in the first three months. For dads too. It forms bonds. This class really focuses on carrying your baby as much as possible (which was my plan), for the first three months. She showed us how to use a ring sling (I've purchased a lovely Oscha sling) and a wrap (hoping to borrow one) and an Ergo (registered for one). The Ergo scares me the least. I trust buckles more than I trust my ability to sling, but practice makes perfect. I really hope someone buys it for us (HINT HINT).
We also don't let baby cry it out in the fourth trimester, okay guys? Crying is usually a last resort for babies, because they are usually quite polite in asking for their needs, so long as we pay attention. They will often use small cues to signal they are hungry or uncomfortable before the screaming starts.
We learned the five S's of comforting: swaddling, swinging, shushing, sucking, side position. This is from The Happiest Baby on The Block, by Dr. Karp. He seems like a weirdo, but his methods appear to work. This will prove to be useful information should we have a fussy or a colicky baby (oh god, please no).
We learned a good swaddle technique last night, called the DUDU, which stands for down up, down up, referring to the method if folding, not baby shits, as you could infer from the unfortunate name. I already kind of knew the basics if swaddling, but this was a bit different for me, and entirely new to James. However, he was swaddling like a pro at the end.
Stay tuned for my thoughts on the breastfeeding class next week! BOOBIES! ( * ) ( * )