Imagine for a moment that you've entered a world completely foreign to you. Only seconds ago you were in an environment that was warm and cozy; life as you know it was perfect, but all of a sudden that changed in a flash. Suddenly you’re freezing, bright lights and big people are surrounding you, sticking things in your nose and rubbing you with a rough fabric that they will later wrap you in. You feel the cold air shock your system as it passes through your body, you have just taken your first breath. This is all too much; overwhelming, over stimulating, and you begin to cry.
When I speak to adults about infant massage, a frequent response I hear is “what's so stressful about being a baby?” We; as parents, often times look at infancy from one point of view, our point of view. We get so caught up in our daily stressors we fail consider how difficult and stressful being an infant really is. Infants are continuously sensing, feeling and evaluating. Before they have a good understanding of one task they begin the process of learning a whole new task. Imagine how stressful it might be to have Mommy and Daddy pressuring you to learn all of these new things, in hopes that you fit into the category society says you should be in developmentally. This is too much: over stimulating, overwhelming; you continue to cry.
As parents we want to do everything possible to make and keep happy babies. That is where infant massage comes in! Think about what massage does for your wellbeing as an adult. It reduces stress, relaxes your body, and helps with the digestion; really the list can go on and on. Infant massage has the very same benefits plus, it provides parents the opportunity to create a healthy and life long bond with their baby. When a baby comes into the world and receives massages, it helps him/her feel loved. This will help to develop a more confident child, this confidence will follow them throughout the course of his/her life. Massage also helps parents become more confident in their abilities. When parents learn to massage their babies they aren't just rubbing oils on their child; they are learning and really getting to know their baby, to understand his/her likes and dislikes, they are learning to communicate and respect this tiny little Being and their space. Studies have shown that infants who receive massages are more calm, respectful, and loving beings as the travel through life's journey.
You stop crying; and even though there's still a lot that you don't understand, you feel supported because your Mom and Dad have given you a voice. They have taken the stress out of being a baby and developed a lifelong bond that will begin to mold you into the amazing Being you were created to be!