Ab Initio International | Mother of Nine

by DeAnn Davies Director of Healthy Steps, Lakeside, Arizona

I arrived in the Couplet Care Unit early one morning. As I approached the nursing station a nurse met me with a smile and a cheery "Good Morning!" The young nurse informed me that she had a mother of 9 on her patient list, and reported that the mother's husband was a local medical practitioner. She then stated that it wasn't necessary to conduct the Newborn Behavioral Observation (NBO) with this mother:infant dyad. She informed me that this mother knew all that there was to know about infant development and behavior, because after all, this was her ninth child. I listened carefully, asked the nurse if there was anything else she wanted to share, and when she finished briefing me on a couple of other families in her care I gently reminded her that I visit with all families in our unit.

Upon entering the room of the mother of nine, I introduced myself, asked her if she would like to watch her newborn's behaviors with me. She said that she was expecting me and that she was glad that I was there. As we moved through the tasks of the NBO, this mother was truly amazed at the competencies of her child. She shared with me that being able to interpret her child's cues was going to be very helpful as she took her little one home to his very active family and busy environment.

As with all NBO encounters I ended our 30-minute discussion about the baby by asking if participating in the NBO was beneficial. She quickly responded by informing me that she felt a deep connection with this infant that she didn't remember feeling with any of the other eight children. Furthermore, she reported that she learned a great deal about infant behavior that she hadn't previously known.