Pahabol Happy Tatay’s Day #beststartswithdad

Instead of the usual lunch or dinner out, our family spent this special day with my dearest friends who are expecting their first bundle of joy next month.

It was a fun baby shower/playdate afternoon with my high school friends and their kids. We shared a hearty lunch. We brought gifts for the baby. The kids enjoyed and played with anything they found in the couple’s place.

Oooops wait! It was Father’s Day, right? No cakes, no gifts for the Dads, no greetings! I only bought a chocolate roll for Tatay when we got home. Bawi kung bawi.

While we were walking down the street to buy our pahabol Father’s Day cake, I unexpectedly asked my husband if he enjoyed his day. Me and my quick mouth! I was hoping that he would still answer yes after spending father’s day listening to high school stories and running after our super-kulit son.

“Oo naman,nag-enjoy ako.” But why? “Masaya ako kasi nakausap natin yung mag-asawa.” He was referring to the expecting couple we visited. The chats we had were mostly about the signs of labor, birth plan and how to cope with the baby’s first month. We gave them parent’s tips based on our own experiences.

Ironically, I had a longer discussion on breastfeeding with the future dad. I think it was a timely chat because he was clueless on the important role he will play on their breastfeeding journey. Here are some of my tips for the soon-to-be breastfeeding dad:

1. Except for the direct feeding part, you have everything in your hands. During the first month, you will take charge and literally be hands-on from the neverending diaper change sessions up to the washing of the baby’s clothes and diapers if you decide to go cloth.

2. Get ready to experience the baby’s first bath and first poo poo. Give mommy time to recover from her exhausting childbirth experience and focus on her breastfeeding. If you think you can’t handle these firsts alone, seek help from the family. Mommy will definitely have her baby bath bonding time when she has recovered.

3. Be Mommy’s best and most firm breastfeeding cheerleader. Affirm her during the high points of her journey like when they reached that perfect latch moment. Give her your best cheer when she’s feeling tired and sleepy from baby’s increasing demand for breast milk all throughout the day (and night too!). Protect and defend her from unwanted comments and doubts on the wonders of breast milk from uninformed family members,neighbors and the rest who have nothing good to say.

4. Learn to cook everything with malunggay. My favorite and most reliable pampagatas putahe were law-oy and the halaan soup with malunggay.

5. Always ask Mommy how she feels and what she needs. She may need to talk to a friend about her breastfeeding questions or she may simply need you to listen to her on what she’s going through.

Remember that your breastfeeding role is very important in the first hours after Mommy’s delivery. In the hospital, give your child the best start by supporting and encouraging Mommy in her first breastfeeding sessions.

Besides the pahabol Father’s Day cake, these tips are also my thank you notes to Rio’s Tatay. He diligently practiced breastfeeding dad tips 1-5. He was my best companion in one of motherhood’s most fulfilling journey. Happy Father’s day Tataystrip! We love you so much!

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