Monday, September 16, 2013

My Successful Breastfeeding for Six (6) Consecutive Months Story!

August is National Breastfeeding Awareness Month. And as a tribute, I will tell the tale of my first successful breastfeeding experience...
When I was pregnant, I leaked milk and although I don't have that much of a boob, (I'm far away from cup D - Asian thing or not?) it is a silver lining to me (as a brand new mom)- a hope that maybe I could actually breastfeed my infant.
No that's not mine - still pregnant at this photo above - I'm just "practicing' with my friend's babe - say hi baby Rain!

Fast forward --- I am proud to (redundantly) say that  "I exclusively breastfed babe for six consecutive months", still breastfeeding him at age 1 year and 4 months and pledge to continue as long as I can until he self-wean. That is how dedicated I am.

But before becoming this self-proclaimed-breastfeeder advocate. I'm reluctant, in-doubt and at the verge of giving up...

I did prepare myself. I researched online, read books, blogged about my personal experiences going through my pregnancy and ask my OB {the very reason your OB should be like your BFF} and still first hand experience is a lot different - and difficult.
Of course, we all are not the same. My shoes won't fit yours, but the thing is, we all are wearing uniform shoes - to do the best we can for our nurslings.
I gave birth around 3pm on a Saturday after a 2day dry labor. I felt I wasn't going to make it until my OB saw a soft black hairy ball peaking and my determination to "push" and cuddle that fur ball became so intense I held my breath for 20 long seconds while "pushing" until it finally popped! Way easier said than done!
Unfortunately though, babe's first milk is formula given to him since I'm knockout and woke around 6pm still groggy. Good thing they initialize to bring the babe to me at around 11pm to breastfeed. Note to self: on next pregnancy, I will talk to the doctor first hand, that I have to breastfeed babe. Formula milk? Thanks but no thank you very much.

Like I said, it was SO hard! All I felt was pain - a burning sensation and I felt like I was a dry well (where are those leaking milk go?). I feel for mom who undergo C-section, I bet it was a lot more difficult for them. So thank heavens, I successfully gave birth via NSD (normal spontaneous delivery).
As discretion, I edited my breastfeeding photo above but no, I don't cover up when I breastfeed outside, in the mall or restaurant. I even breastfeed on makeup events, workshops and seminars just so to educate future moms to breastfeed as well.

Babe is a good latcher - so the problem was me. I think I'm not confident enough to do it. In doubt that my supply is not enough to make him full, and so on and so forth... To summarize my agony, my false agony and to make you nursers out there more courageous to breastfeed, below is my favorite lists of essential points breastfeeders should know, I got this from my favorite mom newsletter at ...
  • Don’t believe that breastfeeding is supposed to hurt and that sore nipples are the norm, or perhaps even a badge of courage for toughing-it-out. If the baby is latched on to the breast properly and draining it, breastfeeding should not hurt!
  • Do teach your baby to “breastfeed” and not “nipple feed." To do so, start by holding your breast steady and compress it into a pointy shape with your hand. Next, bring the baby to you, trying to have your nipple go deep into the baby’s mouth into the S spot (between the baby’s hard and soft palate).
  • Don’t stuff your breast into the baby’s mouth. Instead, bring your baby “to you.” To accomplish this, support the baby well, holding him along his spine and at the base of his head.
  • Do use RAM (rapid arm movement), and bring your baby (or RAM him) onto the breast in a quick-swift motion, allowing the baby to take the breast as deeply into his throat as he can.
  • Don’t get discouraged. If your latch hurts try again. If you allow the baby to nurse in a way that hurts you, your baby will not get the message that he needs to nurse deeper. When a mom and her baby share the experience of being on the breast deeply, with practice, mom will be able to nurse pain free.
  • Do feed your baby 8-10 times in a 24 hour period and look for dirty diapers to know if your baby is getting enough milk daily. What goes in must come out. You need to see 6-8 wet and or dirty diapers in a 24 hour period for the first 8 weeks of life.
  • Don’t allow you or your baby to feel unhappy and dissatisfied. If you are in pain, not getting enough soiled diapers, feel unsure or discouraged, find a qualified Lactation Consultant to help guide and support you in the process.
One of the reasons that help me out was to be in contact to those who support your goal - to breastfeed. You should make sure that your baby's Pedia and your OB are in your boat, not the waves that'll test you, but support you row your way out to successfully exclusively breastfeed your babe for 6 months or so. Remember, the longer the better.

What's your breastfeeding success story? Share away!

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