Creating a meaningful bond with your growing child

Our goal for this session is to maintain positive thoughts about your relationship with your baby now that your baby is almost one year old.

img Reviewing Your Chat With Zuri Zuri taught you ways to spend meaningful time with your children. Spending time with your child becomes increasingly important as your child gets older.

Identifying Unhealthy Thoughts

Motherhood can be very stressful because there are so many responsibilities that it can feel overwhelming. Many mothers sometimes think that they are not good mothers and that they are not able to help their children to be healthy and happy. If you have these thoughts a lot of the time, this can lead you to avoid becoming close to your children or to stop taking care of your children. This can harm both you and your baby because you are so important to each other’s happiness and health.

Here are a couple examples of how the stress of motherhood which can affect how you feel about taking care of your children:

Unhealthy Thought Makes Us Feel/Do Which May Result In
Nothing is in my control. I feel helpless. I can’t look after all my kids, it is too much work. Mother’s health suffers and the children’s needs are neglected.
I have never been a good mother. Blaming myself for every problem. Looking after children is not rewarding.
img Writing Prompt Have you ever thought that you were not taking good care of your child, or children? How did this make you feel?

Replacing Unhealthy Thoughts with Healthy Thinking

You can learn to have thoughts that help you feel better about taking care of your children. These thoughts can help remind you that you can help your child grow up to be healthy, intelligent, and happy. You will then be able to focus more time on your child and to enjoy your time with them. You will also remember to take care of your own health so that you have energy to care for your children.

Healthy Thought Makes Us Feel/Do Which May Result In
If I am healthy, I can give my full attention to my children. More time and energy to spend with your children. More intelligent and healthier children.
I am only feeling like this at this moment. Most times I take good care of my children. Thinking realistically if there is a problem. Feeling hopeful that you can do better next time. Provide better support for my child.
img Writing Prompt What is one time you did something that was very good for your child? How did you feel while you were doing this?
img Let's Practice Practice is a big part of the Healthy Moms program. We must learn how to Think Healthy, and practice is an essential part of learning.

1. Spending Time with Your Baby

Try the following exercises when you have time and are in a comfortable space.

img Gentle Massage:
  • Give your baby a gentle massage while making soothing sounds or saying loving words.
  • Try to do this once a day.
img Talking or Singing to Baby:
  • Talk or sing to your baby every day after feeding.
  • Listen to the sounds and watch the gesture your baby makes and try to mimic them.
  • Aim to do this 3 - 4 times per day.
img Playing with your Baby:
  • Play with your baby 3 - 4 times a day during different times of the day.
  • Show him/her different multi-colored objects or things that make a sound.
  • Hold the object out so your baby can grasp it but make sure they keep it clear from their mouth.

Create this chart in your notebook and track how often you try these activities.

Did you give your baby a gentle massage? Did you sing or talk to your baby? Did you play with your baby?
Day 1 Yes / No Yes / No Yes / No
Day 2 Yes / No Yes / No Yes / No

2. Eating a Healthy Diet

img Writing Prompt Review your previous diet chart. What kinds of foods does your baby enjoy eating, if he or she is eating solid foods?

Create a chart like this in your notebook and use it to monitor your diet.

Breakfast Lunch Snack Dinner
Ex. Tea, porridge, banana Chips and sausage Mandazi Ugali, beef stew, sukuma wiki
Day 1

Day 2

3. Making Time for Rest and Relaxation

img Slow Breathing:
  • Relax your body. Inhale for 3 seconds and exhale for 3 seconds.
  • Do this 2 to 3 times per day for 10 to 15 minutes each time.
img Walking:
  • Follow a gentle walking pace.
  • Do this 1 time per day for 15 to 20 minutes.
img Sleep:
  • Let your mind relax.
  • Try to sleep at least 8 hours a night and take a daily afternoon nap.

Create this chart in your notebook and track how often you try the rest and relaxation activities.

Did you practice slow breathing today? Did you go for a walk today? Did you get a full night’s sleep?
Day 1 Yes / No Yes / No Yes / No
Day 2 Yes / No Yes / No Yes / No

4. Keeping Track of Your Mood

Remember, keeping track of your thoughts and feelings is a great way to see how you change and grow over time. So at least once a day, imagine the 10-step emotion ladder from Session 1 and rate how you are feeling. On the bottom step (1) are women who feel very sad and blue. On the top step (10) are women who feel great with no sadness. Which step best shows how you are feeling?

Create the following chart in your journal. If you are feeling very happy—as happy as you have ever been—you might tick the box for a 9 or 10. If you are having a really tough day, you might tick the box for step 1 or 2. Tick whatever box is right for you. Just remember that low numbers mean more sadness, and high numbers mean more happiness.


img Writing Prompt What is the time of day when you feel your absolute best?
Back to Top