Sunday, August 28, 2011

Confessions of a Breastfeeding Mom

August is breastfeeding month so I would like to take this opportunity to post about breastfeeding before the month ends. I'm no breastfeeding guru. But I knew that I wanted to breastfeed my baby and I thought about this when I was still pregnant with Miya. Fortunately, unlike some moms, I had everyone's support - from colleagues, friends and families, even my OB-GYNE. The moment Miya was out into the world she was placed on my tummy and she immediately latched. She didn't have any difficulty suckling on my nipple (she did not spit out my nipples or anything like that). When I was in the recovery room, the nurse brought her to me to again make her try to latch, and again she was able to do it. I'm not sure if I had milk by that time but she perfectly suckled on my nipple. I gave birth to her at 12:40 in the morning and was out of the recovery room around 4am. By 7-ish am, I received a call from the nursery asking me if I can go there to nurse my baby. I think Joema was out then buying our breakfast and I haven't tried standing up yet, so I told them I will try later in the morning coz I haven't stood up yet or tried sitting up on my own. Maybe after an hour, they called again asking me to come. So I tried to stand up with Joema's help and went to the nursery (I was wheeled going there). Joema was not allowed to go inside so I had to go by myself - carefully taking each step at a time (I was still a bit woozy that time I think).  I remember I asked the nurse for a fresh gown because I had blood stains on what I was wearing (wasn't able to bring sanitary pads in the hospital and haven't worn any I think by then). So I waited for her to bring me a new one before entering the room where I can breastfeed Miya. I was standing the whole time and feeling a bit sick by then. After she brought me the new gown and I changed into (I dressed in front of the nurse hahaha!), I was led to a room with barcaloungers. And then the nurse left me to get Miya. When she was brought in I remember just putting her in my bosom and she instantly nursed. She didn't nurse for a long time so I thought I had to give her back to the nurse immediately. The nurse actually left us while I breastfed Miya. But the nurse told me to try again and just breastfeed my baby. So after trying again I just played with Miya and looked at her and smelled her. I was kicking myself for not bringing my cellphone to take pictures of her. I didn't want to leave but I thought of Joema waiting outside the nursery. Such a shame that dads are not allowed to go inside.

Breastfeeding at our hospital room

After lunch, Miya was roomed in with us. Visitors started arriving. I nursed her even if there were visitors around, I didn't care. On our first night, she wouldn't stop crying. She breastfed and cried all night. I remembered having to ask Joema to take care of her because I badly needed some shuteye. Even for just two hours. It's unbelievable how much our body can take - I can't even think of how I survived that night without much sleep. Before I left the hospital, my nipples were sore and had blood.

When we brought her home, it was her third day. That first night at home, I had engorgement. My breasts were so full but I don't think she was able to get her milk. We'll be able to put her to sleep but she'll wake up after an hour crying. We were up all night. My mother-in-law, bless her, bought malunggay leaves the next day and boiled them for me to drink.

Breastfeeding at 2 months and 3 weeks

I wrote this during that time.


3 Feb 2011

I've been breastfeeding all of 4 days since I gave birth. Last night was the hardest. Miya just won't latch. It started around 8pm, she was hubgry btut she won't latch with either of my breasts. She cried and cried. My mother who was visiting was able to pacify her. By the time my family left, Miya was at it again. She was able to feed and Joema even burped her. After two hours, she was crying again then it all started. Actually even before that we have problems of her latching on my right breast. But last night she just wouldn't take either of my breasts. She will latch fora  few seconds adn then let fo. It won't even last for 10 minutes. We'll be able to stop her crying and put her to sleep but she'll be awak afain after an hour or so. My mother-in-law was able to stop her crying but since Miya was hungry,she'll wake up again all fussy. During all this commotion I tried reading a book, The ABC's of Breastfeeding, which Penny lent me. I found out the other night I had experienced primary engorgement. I should have read this book before giving birth. I was so disappointed with myself. I should've known what to do. So when Miya woke up again and didn't want to latch on either breasts, I asked Joema to prepare ice ona  ahand towel and I started cold treatment on both breasts and tried massaging the left one. I feared I didn't have milk anymore because I wasn't able to feed Miya the other day on a regular basis. I only fed her when she asked for it (almot on the verge of crying). AFter massagin the left one, there was breastbmilk so I knew I didn't have to fear lack of milk. I tried on  the right one but we used a different position, the football hold. Miraculously, she latched and breastfed for a few minutes. Thank God! Until now she's sleeping. But around 6:30am earlier, I tried feeding her again. She didn't wake up but she was able to latch on both breasts for 15 minutes. So now, I know never to wait for her to cry before I start feeding her. Her hunger signals should be enough for me. And I won't put my interest first like sleeping first before I feed her. I'll try to breastfeed her on a much regular interval (2-3 hours) even if she's asleep or even more often if she asks for it.


Breastfeeding on her 3d month birthday!

Miya is now 6 months and 3 weeks old and we're still breastfeeding. She's as healthy as can be - she's had the usual cough and colds but nothing more than that. She doesn't get fever after vaccinations. She's our tabachingching.

I admit most of my motivators to breastfeed are selfish reasons - so that I'll lose weight quickly (which I did) and to have such an intimate bond with my daughter (which we do). The latter part most especially is really rewarding. Even though she's spending most of the day with her yaya, when I come home she still wants to be carried by Mommy and to be nursed. She can't go to sleep without me beside her because she's used to nursing to sleep. Even when people are around and she's being passed from one lola to another, they still need to give her back to me when she cries for me to nurse her.

Yes, she's breastfeeding under there :)
So, you're pregnant and you're reading this please consider breastfeeding your child.


Sharina said...

Bookmarking this entry, Cris. Really inspiring. :) I will be reading more of your breastfeeding posts :) Thank you for this!

cris said...

Good luck on your breastfeeding journey, Sharina!!! Just think milk milk milk and the milk will flow. Just shoot me a message here in case you have questions. I'm no breastfeeding expert but I hope I can answer them.

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