Following my letter to my sons a fortnight ago on how I felt as a first time Dad, I decided to make a list of the ten things you should know when you become a newly mint Dad. In honestly, being a new Dad can be intimidating to some. Thus keep these tips in mind. It may just help you, your baby and even your wife during this transition to fatherhood.
1 Learn to differentiate baby cries
The first thing you hear when your baby arrives is a baby cry. Babies do not just cry for food, they cry for an array of reasons. Being hungry, feeling cold, needing a diaper after a poop or wishing to be hug are but some of the main reasons why they cry.
|Babies cry for various reasons|
Trust me; they do not cry the same way. There are the loud shrieks, the soft cry and the constant purr. Babies have their own ways to communicate. Be with them long enough and you can tell the difference. Knowing the differences means you can attend to them quicker and these crying 'sessions' will be shorter.
2 It is safe to carry a baby
More often than not, you have read tales that men are afraid of carrying babies, especially the crying babies. This fear has also been highlighted in popular culture.
Let me tell you a secret. Holding your baby in your arms is perhaps one of the most beautiful things I have done in my life. As your child grows, you will miss the moment of having a tiny being resting peacefully in your arms. You will miss the smell, you will miss the touch, you will miss the warmth. So do not waste a minute, carry your baby as much as you can.
The feeling is different when they become a 20 kg 4 year old toddler. By then you would probably yearn for a chance to carry the little new born baby in your hands once more.
3 Expect the unexpected
Forget about your regular sleep, your well thought plans of a day out or your daily routine. With a baby around, it means even the best boy scout who is 'always prepared' can falter at the most unexpected moment.
You can never plan for unexpected poo, sudden hunger or sleeplessness in a baby.
4 Diaper changing is an art
To perfect an art, you will need practise. So pick up the diaper and volunteer to change the baby. You will learn to dodge the occasional pee, change diaper in 5 seconds, clean up poo bare hands and change diapers in awkward positions.
|First successful Diaper Change|
5 You can feed milk too
You may have read a lot about breast feeding for moms and how these sessions bond the babies with the mother . Do you know you can experience it too?
In case your mind starts wondering, let me explain. You can help with the milk feeds too, when your wife is able to express milk. Milk can be stored and useful for the occasional feeds as and when the baby desires. Do your part too as a parent. Learn to feed the child and experience the quiet moment bonding with your new-born.
6 The Mom needs rest
Give your wife a break. After all she had carried the child for 9 months and probably gone through the most excruciating pain that you would never understand during childbirth. Volunteer to bathe the baby, change the diapers, fold the clothes and do the night feeds.
A well-rested wife is a happy wife. That will usually lead to a happy family.
7 Don't be shy- Show your love
Shower your babies with kisses, Forget those guides that says you need to be firm with your baby from day 1 so they will be discipline. Don't subscribe to the ' let them cry for at least 5 minutes before you carry them' philosophy. You are raising a child , not a soldier. Give them the love and attention they need from day 1.
8 It is ok to feel helpless
In the midst of being a new Dad, there may be occasions where you might feel helpless. Do not despair. Your fraternal instinct will step in. It is ok to make little mistakes ( such as putting on the diaper the wrong way) along the way. Just learn from it and Father on.
9 Fun will come... Eventually
You will be rewarded for your hard work. From the pride you feel when they take their first step, to the heart-warming moment when they call you Daddy. These are just the tip of the iceberg as you will reap the seeds you sow from the first day you interact with your child
10 You are not a standby parent, you are a Dad!
Lastly, you are not a standby or a substitute parent. You are a Dad and form a tag team known as PARENTS with your wife.. So start being a main player in your child's life. Be a DAD!
Speaking from experiences, things are not as scary as it sounds. In fact if you do become a second time dad, you will realize that you were probably too Kan Cheong the first time round. It's like riding a bicycle. Once you master it, you will never forget the 'skill'.
Here you will get tips on baby care and find out more about Weaning , Tui-Na for baby, and Dental care. Mrs Wong Boh Boi, Assistant Director (Clinical) and Senior ParentCraft Lactation Consultant of Thomson ParentCraft Centre, will be on-site to give parents tips on Paediatric Massage for Toddlers & Infants
Daddy's Bootcamp is open to public and it’s free. There will be stage games such as Daddy Diaper Challenge and Toddler Crawling Challenge. Registrations will be onsite 15 minutes before the game. The first 300 visitors on Saturday receive a FREE goodie bag too
2nd Aug -3rd August
Compass Point (Next to Sengkang MRT)