Thursday, March 7, 2013

Playing with an Unborn Baby

I woke up from a nap (the blessed repose I seek most afternoons) to find Baby Cinco's foot busily working my right side.  So, I decided to play with that little foot.  It was an enjoyable few minutes - probably the most fun I've had with this last part of my pregnancy, thus far - complete with me talking to my baby.  Of course, there is a person in there, but I really feel as though I was bonding with this person.  I mean, there is a PERSON inside of me - and we were PLAYING!!!

I thought I would blog about some ways a mommy (and daddy and siblings) can play with the baby before baby is even born.

1)  Talking.  The baby always hears its mommy's voice, but it's a good think to talk directly to the baby.  I'm guilty of not talking to this baby as much as I did with my other children, especially my first.  When I want quiet time these days, I'd like it to be, well... quiet.  But I try, when I think of it, to speak directly to Baby Cinco.  Tell the baby you are excited to be meeting him, you love her, what you imagine he looks like.  I also encourage my husband and my children to talk to the baby.  Casey is quite fond of talking to her unborn sibling - it's very sweet.

2)  Singing.  I enjoy singing; my children and I are constantly singing.  Sometimes, we even sing to Baby Cinco.  Even if you're not the greatest singer, I think music has a profound impact on people - even unborn babies.

3)  Music.  Of course, with singing comes music.  I usually wake up to the same song every morning:  Loreena McKennit's "The Old Ways."  I love it, and I've noticed Baby Cinco loves it, too.  When I was in my 6th month of pregnancy, I noticed one morning that she started stirring as soon as Loreena began to sing (there is a long instrumental intro to the piece before the singing begins).  After a few weeks of playing this song every day and noticing that Baby Cinco woke up during the tune, I decided to play it one afternoon when baby was still.  Sure enough, she woke up when the singing began.  I can't wait to play the song for Baby Cinco in person (not in utero)!  I'm interested to see if she'll perk up or calm down.

4)  Massage.  I think most expectant mothers rub their bellies - consciously or otherwise.  Rubbing your belly can also act as baby massage, depending on how firm the rubbing is.  It feels good for mommy and baby, too!

5)  Light.  I've always played the flashlight game with my unborn babies.  You know, taking a flashlight and seeing if baby reacts. 

6)  Reading.  Similar to my music experiment, reading the same book over and over to your unborn baby may have an effect on the baby once the baby has made his/her appearance.  With Casey, I read Guess How Much I Love You.  Unfortunately, I didn't read it on a daily basis until she was born, but it was still fun to interact with her prenatally.

7)  Tickling.  This was my inspiration for writing this blog post.  I found my baby's little foot began my quest to tickle it.  It was fun to see that foot trying to escape my tickles.

So... there you have it!  Play with your baby now - you don't have to wait until your baby is born to play with - and bond with - your little one.

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