No one can deny the emotions babies cause us to feel. Whether it is passing a baby in a stroller and ensuring you get that one little glimpse, or gazing into your own baby’s eyes as you feed him, change him, and simply watch him in wonder. Despite these astonishing emotions that are inherently inside of us as parents and human beings, we sometimes focus too much on completing the daily tasks at hand- diaper changes, baths, feedings, etc. Instead, we should try to make our baby an active participant in these daily actions of his everyday life.
Ways to Communicate with Infants
How can parents and caretakers make certain this interactive dialogue occurs? Some researchers suggest several tips when completing these daily responsibilities. It is important to pick up your baby in a way that does not startle her. If your baby is awake or asleep make sure your motions are gentle and soothing. Allow your baby to be a partner by talking to your baby in order to prepare her for what is about to happen. Listen to your baby. If your baby is fussy let her know you acknowledge her feelings and explain why you are changing her diaper or taking off her shirt. These discussions will create a partnership. Soon these actions will become second nature and daily tasks will become more enjoyable for both parent and child.
As you go about your routines, reflect about how active of a participant you are allowing your baby to be. You may be surprised how silent you are during certain tasks. If you allow your baby to “help,” you will surely be amazed at how quickly he reacts by relaxing, smiling, and even putting his hands up as early as a few months old. Who knew changing your baby’s diaper could be such a stage for communication, learning, and growth?
For more information on this topic, visit Ann Tardo’s article, Being with Babies.