If you can believe it or not, tonight was the very first time I bathed my baby. My baby is over two months old, and since the day she was born, we have had a night nurse come about four nights a week who has taken care of her baths. Because of that, I have actually never bathed her. For the first week of her life, her umbilical cord was still intact, and you are not supposed to bathe your baby or submerge her body in water when the cord is still intact. Instead, you are supposed to give the baby sponge baths and avoid getting water around her belly button, which could get infected. Our night nurse took care of all of this, and so we never had to worry about her belly button getting infected. Our night nurse Cheryl is leaving us to go to her next client who booked her far in advance, and so tonight was her very last night with us. On her last night, she suggested that I bathe the baby and that she watch. And so, I bathed my baby for the very first time.
Kaia loves her baths. The very first bath she had after her umbilical cord fell off, she was really pissy and hated it. She screamed and yelled and cried from the beginning until the end. Her second bath was much more pleasant with just a little bit of crying. And her third bath onward, she loved it as though it was a luxurious spa experience. Her little bathtub came with a newborn sling, as well as two additional accessories: one bottle with little holes in it to drizzle water all over her, as well as a little whale with tiny holes in it to sprinkle water over her body as entertainment. She absolutely loves her tiny little whale and having water sprinkled all over her head. This is probably her favorite part of the bath, as she really just laps it up and has endless smiles.
So I bathed Kaia this evening, and while I enjoyed it, I realized that I felt a little bit disabled because my hands hurt while keeping her body upright and especially when turning her over to get her back. It was hard for me to have a good grip on her body especially, while flipping her over to wash her back. It would have been easier to have two people do this. Since that experience, our new night nurse Annie has given a couple of tips in terms of making sure that the grip is strong on her body when flipping her over while she’s wet: use a dry washcloth on her chest when you flip her over so that your hand is gripping the washcloth instead of her slippery body. And then, keep the wet washcloth on her back. This will ensure a grip on both sides so that you don’t accidentally dropped the baby or lose grip.
These night nurses know everything.