4 Questions about babies and pandemics
Oh my goodness…
I don’t know about you but it feels to me like unknowns of COVID are lasting a lot longer than I expected. As this all unfolds, new parents are faced with questions that weren’t even in our grid 8 months ago!
Pregnancy can be filled with a lot of unknowns– especially now in the midst of a global pandemic. If you’re expecting, you may be feeling some anxiety over all the unanswered questions. In this FB live, I addressed questions asked by some of you. Take a listen.
Today I’m going to start with how to deal with the uncertainties and ways you can approach them, then we’ll look at a few questions you all have about how it’s affecting your child.
As parents, we need to be modeling for our kids how to react to stressful times by coping in healthy ways. This is the most powerful way to make sure children feel secure.
I think we have to be mindful of the present and stay focused on what is actually happening and not let ourselves go to worst case scenarios. – Jerry Bubrick, PdD
I’m worried about not being able to take my baby out places. I feel like I have to keep her locked inside all day. Any ideas?
Think about where you can go that you won’t be in close contact with people — walks, errands where you drive through or have something delivered to your car, parks.
Spend as much time outside as possible. Even when you don’t feel like it, go out there. Even a blanket on the grass under a tree will do wonders for your baby.
Create structure in your day, even if your baby is really young. Routines, doing things at the same time – this is good for your baby and good for you too.
My baby is two months old and has only met one set of grandparents and my closest friend. He’ll meet some other family members this weekend finally but how will he know them if he only sees them so seldom? Will this affect him once this is all over?
Your baby’s ability to relate to and respond to new people is dependent on a few things. One is their age. At around 3-4 months, they’ll begin to prefer the people who care for them most. This grows stronger and around 9 months, the cognitive shift of object permanence begins. This means your baby knows something/someone exists even when they can’t see them – which means they begin to have a hard time separating from you. Babies rarely show distress around strangers before 6 months and commonly do around 8 months and this continues through the first year.
By talking about them and having pictures to show
By regularly having FaceTime or zoom calls and involving your baby
By working together to figure out ways to connect – examples: I show our dog, pool, tour the house on facetime.
When you are able to be together, expect your child to cling. It won’t last long. Talk it through well in advance with your child, with your family members, set expectations. Gradually increase time together and how you do it. Your child will follow your lead.
I feel really isolated & full of anxiety about potential infection for me and my baby. What can I do?
First of all, watch what you’re reading and listening to. Make sure it’s really helpful! There’s a lot of doom and gloom out there and experts call this, “mental health fake news”.
If social media is making you anxious, take a break. Being informed is one thing, being overexposed is another.
Talk to your friends — I regularly ask mine if they know anyone who has died from COVID? Or has had it? Get a grip on your own reality.
I’m really worried about finding and trusting childcare after 6 weeks postpartum when I have to get back to work. How do I know who to trust?
Child care right now is a real concern and one to not take lightly. But you can trust that folks in child care are very regulated, very aware and concerned about keeping your child safe.
Things to look for:
Limited numbers of children in a group. Rooms and spaces arranged for space between children
Teachers should not move from room to room
Safe check-in procedures that include temperature checks for everyone
Hand washing protocols for teachers and children that are followed every time
Sanitizing protocols throughout the day
Appropriate interactions and communications with children that don’t invoke anxiety and fear
So how do you stay sane? Take your baby outside, talk to your friends often and when you do, be mindful of what you’re talking about. Do all you can to stay healthy and trust yourself.
You know what is best for your baby and you are equipped with a knowing, an intuition, on what to do. You’ve got this!
Check out the Quick Start to Newborns, a easy-to-get-through course designed to show you the most important things you need to know about your newborn… how to swaddle, change a diaper, burp, soothe them when they cry plus tips on taking care of yourself.
Click below to learn more!
Until next time,