Hi loves, here I want to share a little bit of my not so thorough “expertise” on what I like to call “mummy-ing”, the art of being a mummy. This goes out to my fellow moms, moms-to-be, and any body taking care of a child. Around this time last year, I gave birth to the most amazing, sweet and precious baby boy. MY CJ. The first year with him has been one heck of a roller coaster, lol! Mainly given that his daddy and I had to learn pretty much EVERYTHING by ourselves; and this is not a complain, rather I’m expressing a sense of pride in that huge accomplishment on our parts!
From what I have learned, raising a child takes a lot, a lot of trials and error, a lot of dedication and a lot of patience. It is truly a journey…but a very enjoyable and rewarding one. So far, I feel like it all comes down to what I call “the 3 C’s of mummy-ing”: Communication, Consistency, and….you guessed it Cuddles!
Often times, people think that they can only start to really communicate with little ones when they start to exhibit signs of spoken language. But the reality is the complete opposite. Matter fact, babies are communicating beings from their early moments… inside their mamas. Yes! And that’s why some experts actually recommend talking, reading, singing, and praying with your baby while still pregnant. Take it from my experience, it will even help you anticipate your child’s personality as you will see the way he/she (or they) reacts to certain types of music, or certain voices, tempos etc. It will help you know what seems to get your child pumped up, and what seems to soothe him… bottom-line: communication with your bundle of joy sets the tone for your upcoming relationship, and it is best to establish that cornerstone from the very early days.
Even more fascinating, some experts argue that prenatal communication actually paves the way for speech development a little later down the road.
“Infants are learning and tuning into the speech patterns of their first exposed language(s) earlier than was originally thought (…)This may suggest the importance of the mother not only to talk during pregnancy but to continue to talk to her newborn from the moment of birth to help facilitate language development” says Melissa Wexler Gurfein, a New York City’s Speech Pathologist.
Then of course, once the baby’s out, the fun begins, lol! It becomes more of a two-ways communication. Although baby language cannot always be understood by all, just a little bit of effort and patience will help you uncover a lot about what they want to tell you. They will use crying to communicate their needs to you, eye contacts, gestures, facial expressions, mama you name it! When you pay close attention, you will notice that some are a response of something you may have said or infer to them. These are the basis of communication. Once you both master that stage, it just expands for the best, as the first vocal sounds come out…the first “dada” or “mama” or “naah”, and before you know it you might hear a sweet “I love you mama” (Not there yet, but it’s just a matter of time )
One very key thing to understand is that communicating thoughts and ideas is not a skill that the children are born with. Just as motherhood is a learning experience for you, so is the art of self-expression.
What communication actually does: it gives the kids clear guidance on what is expected from them, as well as a roadmap on how to get to a more familiar, and enjoyable environment. Not only that, it gives them a safe and healthy platform to express their feelings, to build their self-esteem, and learn the core values that should make them great adults tomorrow! After all, isn’t that the ultimate goal of parenting, raising future responsible and well-versed adults?
Here are a few steps you can take (or reinforce) to ensure an effective communication with your little ones NO MATTER the age!
- Use your ears before you use your mouth: LISTEN. Stopping whatever you were busy with to listen to them show them just how valuable they are to you! Even babies can feel it trust me! Give them some cues to show them you are indeed listening with words like:
- Go ahead baby!
- Tell me more
- For real baby? Then what happened?
The moment my baby CJ started to babble at around 5 months, whenever I would tell him “tell everything to mama” it was the funniest thing ever, you could just see his face light up, and he would go on and on and on.
- Be a source of encouragement: give them some fuel with simple words like
- I know you can handle it.
- I am here to help you.
- It’s alright baby
Like I said before, these really work at any age! When CJ started crawling at 6 months (yay I got a lil champ), he was going backwards. At first, I bet it was fun for him to see himself moving around and exploring every little corner he could get to. But then, the frustration started to sink in, when his favorite toy was a few feet ahead and every effort he would make just dragged him further away. And I noticed that wen his dad and I would say thing like, “Go ahead champ” “you can do it” he would raise his head and try to push forward! Like seriously, I am not kidding you guys! With a little bit of practice, it was just a matter of days until he found the way to crawl forward!
- Always show love…By that I mean say the words! “I love you!” Show them that playing with them, or singing their favorite songs is the most fun you can have in your day. And remember, there is no such thing as saying “I love you” too much, certainly not to your child!
The other big C is Consistency. Whether we’re talking about sleep training, potty training, and all the other trainings around, consistency is the key! Did you know that babies get stressed too? Yes, they do! And the effects can be pretty harmful both in the short and long run. (If you are interested in that topic, here is a good article about it). One of the biggest trigger of stress in humans in the unknown in its may forms ( the unexpected, uncertainty, mystery, etc).
So it becomes obvious that a great way to alleviate stress in babies is by giving them a sense of familiarity in their day-to-day lives, and consistency is the key to creating routines, which in turn gives the kids that safety net I am talking about. As a matter of fact, routines give them a sense of security and help them develop self-discipline. About that! Let me tell you, one of the biggest gift you could give someone is teaching them discipline. Look around you, every successful person, at school, in the workplace, in the army…wherever has one trait that outshine everything else, and that is discipline!
And here comes the part we all love! The last and favorite C of all: Cuddles! I don’t know about you but I’m a big fan, and my baby is the biggest fan, lol. At about 8 month of age, he started giving kisses randomly. And now whenever I say “give a kiss to mama” oh boy, it’s the highlight of my day!
And he likes to kiss his dada too! Now look at these two, OMG too much cuteness in one picture!!!
Back to the serious stuff! For real, cuddling happens to be highly therapeutic: not only is it good for you mama (if you are like me), but it has far much greater benefits for your child. Some studies show that children who have been deprived of physical contact (hugs, kisses, cuddles) as babies tend to have lower levels of social-bonding hormones (Read more). So, now that you know, spoiiiiiiiillll them! After all that discipline talk, I think we all deserve that!
I hope you enjoyed reading this, and please note that NOTHING mentioned in this blog can serve as either a diagnosis or a prescription. If you notice any cause for concern in your child behavior or development, call the doctor right away!
Please show your love, like comment and share. Plus, I would definitely love to know about your perspective on mummy-ing. What are the most important things for you when it comes to raising a child? Leave a comment below, and if you haven’t done so yet, subscribe and/or follow my blog to stay up-to date!
Love you all! ❌ ⭕️❌ ⭕️ 💋