New Certified HUG Teacher Recommends HUG Techniques During Busy Holiday Season

Sharon Stevenson has just become a Certified HUG Teacher. She is also certified as a Birth Doula, in Prenatal and Postpartum Yoga, Infant Massage, Happiest Baby on the Block, Itsy Bitsy Yoga, Signing Safari, and HypnoBirthing.  Sharon teaches all of these classes at her small studio in Alexandria, VA. Today she shares her journey with HUG Your Baby.

This year when I attended the HypnoBirthing conference someone mentioned to me that I should look into the H.U.G. program. That day I looked up the program and within a few short weeks was working towards my certification. I am fascinated by this work and wish I had known about this program a long time ago. It seems that learning this information should be a prerequisite to being a parent or working with infants.

After going through the H.U.G. program I realized what a wealth of information the baby gives us and, yet, most people have no idea what is happening before their eyes. For example, now as I teach a Mom and Baby Yoga class I notice that babies are moving in and out of Zones; they are sending loud SOS messages, but no one is listening to them. When I teach a mom one or two H.U.G. techniques to try, she is amazed by how quickly her baby responds. Once parents understand the Zones and the SOS messages, it is easy for them to bring their babies to a calmer state.  

Here is a description of using the H.U.G. with one of my families.

"Jackson is three months old, however, he was born 4 weeks early via C-section. Jackson is great at giving cues to his mom and what is equally great is that his mother read him perfectly. Jackson is very alert and active and rarely has had a rebooting incident.

I spent two hours with them and his mother found that all the HUG techniques simply affirmed that she was doing a great job with Jackson. He was in a deep sleep when I arrived. We observed him as he brought himself it an active, alert Zone, but gave him the time to see if he wanted to go back to sleep or play.  Once in the Ready Zone, which did not take him long at all, Jackson was a party animal! He loves kicking  any pillow that leans against his feet. He also tracked a toy from one side to the other with many smiles and out loud laughs. He is also quite a conversationalist as well.  

After playing he gives his mom his nursing cue. Once nursing Jackson began to wiggle around so we stopped our conversation and mom stroked the top of his hand, which brought on a good strong suck. At the end of the session the mom voiced a bit of concern over all the family members that Jackson is going to be around suring the holidays. Mom wants to protect him from over stimulation.  She also was concerned that her mom, who is coming to visit, would over- stimulate Jackson.  I offered to loan her the HUG DVD to show her mother saying that I was sure once her mom viewed the DVD she  would be better prepared  to understand exactly what Jackson is communicating."

My plans are to teach this program to couples before they have their babies. I already teach Happiest Baby On The Block and now I am going to incorporate H.U.G., Dunstan Baby Language, and a little Itsy Bitsy Yoga and Infant Massage into a class of its own.

We spend a lot of time thinking about how to get the baby into the world and I would like to now encourage expectant parents to spend an equal amount of time understanding babies before they enter their family.