The first hour after your baby is born is really special and precious. In that moment you become a new family. Whilst having skin to skin with your baby he or she will gaze at your face, be calmed by your familiar voice, be kept warm and his or her breathing and heart beat will stabilise and adjust to life outside of the womb. It truly is magical to observe. I have watched in wonder as birth partners too enjoy skin to skin with their baby, talking gently, their baby responding to the recognizable tones. Your baby is alert, all of his or her senses experiencing the outside world – the light, the sounds, your familiar scent, the warmth and comfort of your skin, and your baby will show signs of looking for their first feed.

I find it quite sad when new parents lose this window of opportunity of bonding and getting to know their baby. Mobile phones are great for capturing those first moments on camera, however all too often the priority appears to be going on Facebook to post the birth, texting and phoning, sometimes even before the placenta has been delivered! I have heard of babies being put in their cots and lying there showing all the signs of needing that first feed whilst mum is busy looking at her phone and oblivious to her baby.

Of course, I realise how important it is to let loved ones know of your baby’s arrival, especially new grandparents. However, keep that golden hour after your baby’s birth protected. It forms the foundation of your relationship with your baby, it is incredibly special and this time can never be re-captured.