I’m a Huggies Hugging Expert
Last month, I had my first live involvement as a Huggies #NoBabyUnhugged mom ambassador. Huggies created an experience that introduced moms and moms-to-be to the power of hugs and showed why they are integral to both mom and baby. I’m a Huggies Hugging Expert
The line up of experts was beyond impressive: Dr Dina Kulik mom of three (soon to be four) and a pediatrician; Dr. Christine Chambers and Dr. Marsha Campbell-Yeo, the experts providing the science behind Huggies’ Hug Plan; and Angela Johnston an R&D specialist from Huggies HQ in Wisconsin. I was honoured to be speaking as an expert on hugging with this fantastic group of women. I decided to give myself an honourary ‘Dr’ title just for the day. I’m a Huggies Hugging Expert
Station 1: Experience a Hug
I really wanted to participate in this station so I slipped into an empty chair beside Dr. Dina. We started with a ‘hug jacket,’ a remote controlled vest and hood that inflated and vibrated to ‘hug’ each mama at the table- (I’m working on calling in a favour to get one of my own) We explored the sense of touch with soft lovies, Huggies Natural Care wipes and muslin blankets. We had blindfolds and noise-cancelling headphones to ensure our senses were all focused on our sense of touch. It made me intensely aware of what a baby would feel when they are entirely new to these soft sensations. I wanted to curl up and take a nap enveloped in the softness and comfort of a hug.
Station 2: Preparing for that first hug
This was my station. Dr. Christine Chambers and Dr. Marsha Campbell-Yeo, the scientists who first introduced me to the power of skin-to-skin, sat to my right and walked guests through the science behind that first hug. Controlling body temperature of baby, promoting bonding, managing breathing, better pain management, mental wellness of Mum & Baby are just some of the reasons that skin-to-skin immediately after birth is so important. (You can read their full white paper on http://bit.ly/2pVrmNb) I had the best job- I got to speak about one of my favourite pastimes: hugging my son. I talked about my Huggies hug plan, an extension of a birth plan, where I outlined the tools I would use to ensure that I captured that first hug with my son. I wanted that baby on my chest as soon as he came out, before the cord was cut, before he was cleaned off – I wanted to hug my little miracle as soon as possible. After nine months of carrying this little piece of my husband and I, feeling him kick, hiccup, roll, grow, I already loved him with my entire being and wanted nothing more than to hold him immediately.
I was able to relay my preparation for this moment with the audience…or at least tried to in a condensed period of time and without the excess of emotion that bubbles over every time I try to talk about it. Preparing for labor can be overwhelming. So many different circumstances have to be accounted for and it can be difficult to know where to begin. In the end, we all want to give birth to a happy and healthy baby and show them love the instant they arrive. For the mums-to-be in the crowd that day, I hope that my personal tips helped them prepare for that moment. You can read more about why I created a Hug Plan and why you should too here.
Station 3: Preventing Poopsplosions
Dr. Dina Kulik and Huggies R&D scientist, Angela Johnston, hosted the final station. They walked the group through diaper best practices; ways to ensure the poop stays inside the diaper and not up the wall, as can be the case. Angela also walked the group through how and why Huggies diapers and wipes are created the way that they are. Their diaper innovation considered details that I hadn’t even thought of but definitely appreciated. I’m a Huggies Hugging Expert
The science, time and detail that goes into the production of Huggies wipes is fascinating. The percentage of water in a wipe can change its effectiveness dramatically: 0.01% means the difference between a wipe disintegrating and effectively, safely and softly cleaning baby’s bum. The material in a diaper has changed over the years as well. Testing absorbency rates, flexibility and sensitivity, Angela and her team use their knowledge of chemistry, feedback from hospitals & nurses, and the experience as parents while continuing to update and upgrade Huggies diapers. I’m a Huggies Hugging Expert
From the first hug to the wipes and everything in between, my entire Huggies experience that day was enlightening and inspiring. I got to hold babies, get excited with pregnant mums-to-be and share labour stories with fellow mothers.
I was able to be part of an amazing group of women, talking about skin-to-skin, and the power of a hug. Not only was it an honour, but educational for my role both as a Huggies ambassador and most importantly, as a Mum.
I can’t wait for the next one!