Meet Kevin, first-time dad currently residing in the Gold Coast. Kevin is originally from the UK but has lived in Australia for the last 6 years and believes it’s a great country to have a family. His little one, Henry, is 16 weeks old.
What were your first thoughts and feelings after your baby was born?
It was a surreal moment just like the whole pregnancy, Henry was born nearly two weeks early (38 weeks 3 days) and the whole time it didn't quite seem real. My thoughts were “Wow, you are actually my son and I'm responsible (along with my wife) for your care...when did I become such an adult?!” The moment you get to hold your baby for the first time is a very special and I was looking forward to spending my time raising our little boy and showing him the world (subject to finances!)
Did you settle quickly into a routine with your baby? If so, do you think it worked well for you?
For the first 4 weeks we recorded everything from feeds to nappy changes to track his pattern and also to look back on. We were feeding on demand and waking him up in the night every few hours or so but transitioned into a better routine at 8 weeks. He’s very consistent for the evening time, bath, feed, sleep but during the day he is irregular with his napping. It definitely helped us getting a routine so you can plan your day and I could help before and after work when he was at his most difficult phase.
How soon after your baby was born did you begin to swaddle your baby?
We were swaddling Henry from the get-go in the hospital with swaddling blankets which was sometimes a challenge. “Henry Houdini” I would call him, as he was an expert escape artist. We started using the LOVE TO DREAM SWADDLE UP™ from one week old and there was no way he would escape from the zipper suit!
How did you come to know about Love To Dream™?
My Mother-in-Law bought the LOVE TO DREAM SWADDLE UP™ for us just before Henry was born, she's got a friend whose grandchild had one. I had seen the product on a YouTube blog earlier in the year as well as my own research so was a happy-chappy when she bought us one!
Do you feel like using the LOVE TO DREAM™ range of products has made a positive impact on you and your baby's sleep?
Definitely. We’ve bought a number of products now as he’s already grown out of two sizes. We’ve also bought a heavier tog product for the recent “cold” weather here in South East Queensland. Henry was always wanting to sleep with his hands up and we noticed this after a few days, the Love To Dream SWADDLE UP™ keeps the baby snug yet allows them to have their hands up for comfort. The sleeves are long enough for Henry to chew on to self soothe himself back to sleep which is great for both of us. When I returned to work everyone was surprised that I didn’t walk around like a sleep deprived zombie!
What is the one thing you wish you'd known before you became a parent?
That a lot of things are normal and don’t over-worry. Babies come in different sizes and have different behaviours. Don't stress and compare your baby to others, don't put too much pressure on yourself to get a baby in a routine. Listen to your baby and their needs. Enjoy every moment as everyday they change and develop.
Three words to describe life before parenthood and three to describe life after becoming a parent?
Before: Life is good.
After: Life is fantastic!
What is the one piece of advice you’d offer new parents or parents-to-be?
Be relaxed and don’t stress. The babies can feel your stress and tension so take a deep breath and understand things from your baby’s perspective as all they know is their natural instincts and where they have been comfortable in the womb.
What are your top 5 essential items to have ready to go when baby arrives?
- The LOVE TO DREAM SWADDLE UP™ & dual zipper onesies for easy, less disturbing nappy changes.
- A BabyBjorn baby bouncer (Henry loves it and it gives you a few minutes to get things around the house done) or a portable bassinet.
- An ergonomic changing station with wet wipes (preferably Waterwipes), spare clothes and nappies in close reach. I would change Henry on the floor or at an awkward height before and it would give me an achy back and I’d make old man groans when getting up!
- Night light (for us so we could see at night).
- A great nappy/Dad bag. It will carry spare clothes, changing mat, wipes, snacks and a camera as you can never take too many photos of your baby!
Follow Kevin’s journey as a first-time dad over on Instagram!