An image seen recently sparked the idea for this title.
The image: A group of knitters. Sitting side by side, knitting some sort of woolen garment by interlacing the stitches with knitting needles. It must be said that, in my part of the country, it is common to knit, out of wool, clothes and blankets for the arrival of a baby.
Being present at such life events, like the arrival of a baby, seems to be the natural course for those who work in the domain of perinatal care. As is the opportunity to take part in professional enrichment activities for those who work in the implementation of quality programs such as BFHI/BFI. Attending knowledge and skill transfer training may hold the attention of an engaged audience. An educational event that presents a sensitive and respectful approach to the mother/parent-baby dyad who may be in an inopportune situation to provide care for the baby; when the parent is bedridden with a health condition, for example.
The mother/parent in such a context might feel a need for information on pain management, as well as for ample opportunity for rest. Attributing value to the mother/parent-infant reciprocal relationship even when the parent/mother is experiencing bed rest is considered to be supportive, by some. In the same way that emotional support is given to foster parental confidence when another person is taught to recognize a baby’s signs of hunger, need to suckle and other needs. And when someone else is responsible for recognizing when it is time to nurse. The allied caregiver can help the bedridden parent not only to respond, but also to make eye contact with the baby, smile, talk and touch.
Some mothers/parents need the help of this ally for breastfeeding and caring for the baby. They may also need additional time to assimilate the information provided during the course of their stay in the perinatal care unit and to feel confident in returning home.
Showing sensitivity to the individual situation of the dyad while encouraging mother/parent-infant and ally interactions certainly supports the dyad relationship. And it may be of comfort to them, such as a soft woolen blanket crafted by interlacing stitches with knitting needles; for baby’s arrival, a woolen garment and blanket, traditionally made by allies of the mother/parent-infant dyad.
May warmth and softness define your journey.
Manon Campagna, IBCLC
- World Health Organization. (2022). WHO recommendations on maternal and newborn care for a positive postnatal experience: executive summary.
- United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), World Health Organization. (2021). Implementation Guidance on Counselling Women to Improve Breastfeeding Practices.
- Inspired by : World Health Organization. (2020). Competency verification toolkit: ensuring competency of direct care providers to implement the baby-friendly hospital initiative.
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Last Updated: September 2018