So breastfeeding isn’t as easy as I thought… who knew? 😛
One would think that breastfeeding this natural thing would happen automatically and it kind of does but also kind of doesn’t. I’m not going to get into the benefits of breastfeeding because I think we’ve all heard it a 1000 times before. I ALSO don’t want mom’s to feel bad if they had to for some reason formula feed. You are doing what you feel is right or what you must and what works for you! As long as your baby is healthy and thriving that’s the most important thing! I wanted to share my breastfeeding story with you and maybe in some way my ‘tips’/journey will help out another mom.
- Ask for help if you need it! I have a personality that wants to do everything themselves. I can handle everything (or so I think) so asking for help is tough for me. Doing huge amounts of research before giving birth I realized that breastfeeding might not come easily to me so I told myself that I would ASK for help! The nurses at the hospital gave me loads of hands on help and tips that made breastfeeding possible. SO don’t be scared to ask for help.
- The correct latch! It is extremely IMPORTANT that the latch is correct. If your baby is making a sucking noise while feeding that means that the latch might not be right. What I did was I would rub my nipple on her mouth to make her open really wide which made her latch on the way she was suppose to. IF she didn’t latch on properly I would have to de-attach her, which was awful because it made her cry but at least then she opened her mouth really wide which made the correct latch come more easily. (below I’ve made a video where I showcase what a correct latch for Matylda looks like) NOTE: in the FIRST two weeks your nipples are a bit sore.
- Try out different positions! My favorite at the beginning was laying down with her. The second one is the regular cradle position. And for a brief period of time she liked feeding in the ‘football’ hold. That’s not her thing now though and she prefers the being on the pillow and feeding that way now.
4. Drink loads of water! I know that they say to drink more water than normal but they really mean it! I came up with a plan that when she drinks I drink. 🙂 I feel like my water bottle and I are attached at the hip.
5. Don’t compare yourself to others! Matylda for example eats only 5-8 minutes at a time. Her friend, Jacob, who was born a week after her eats for 20 minutes at a time. Both children are healthy and thriving. I hope I can take my own advice not only when it comes to breastfeeding but other parenting things as well.
6. RELAX! Relax as much as you can. Yes, it’s stressful this being a mom thing. I know. I worry about everything, people coughing on her, me dropping her, when we’re walking by a busy street a car swerving off the road and hitting the stroller/pram/buggy. BUT I also noticed that when I’m stressed out she seems to sense it and she doesn’t eat as much or as long (I know this because 1-2 hours later I get the ” I’m HANGRY cry” – which is terrifying) SO to calm myself down I take deep breathes in and out AND put on some relaxing music. Which for me is Micheal Buble 🙂
7. These are the products that I use every time that I breastfeed or daily!
- breastfeeding pillow (as seen in the pictures above)
- a water bottle
- breast pads (I’ve tried several brands, they all seem ‘the same’ to me. No brand stands out enough that I would recommend
- Feeding tops (as seen in the videos below and the pictures above) I love them. I have nine of them now and I wear them every day!
8. Burping. I heard a myth that breastfeeding babies don’t need to be burped. This is not the case with Matylda. She needs to be burped every time. If not we have a grumpy baby on our hands that’s full of gas. 😉 so don’t believe everything you read/hear!
9. PUMPING! (this will be it’s own blog post I think) When to start? I started pumping in the hospital because my milk didn’t come in right when she was born. I spent the 3 night of her life feeding and pumping probably one of the worst nights of my life. I think I will forever remember sitting there on the hospital bed crying thinking that I couldn’t feed my own baby. (YES, I was being dramatic. I just had a baby… hormones) I felt awful. To this day I hate pumping. In terms of pumping now, I pump ever day or every other day. To have a bottle of breast milk in the fridge as a back up (if I go somewhere and am not able to breastfeed for example) I’ve read loads of articles about nipple confusion but this hasn’t been a problem for Matylda. Something that I was a bit shocked about as well is that she also likes drinking cold milk from the fridge.
10. And my final tip is to just simply ENJOY the time. For some reason I though I would hate breastfeeding. Maybe because I heard the horror stories about the pain and the biting. But I can honestly say that as of this moment it’s my favorite time with her. I feel this close connection with her then. And it’s a time for me as well to sit and just enjoy her. I can’t do anything else BUT sit there and look at her and focus on her. It’s the 5-7 minutes that I have with her every 2-4 hours that’s just me and her and our thoughts. I think about the pregnancy, about her future, and sometimes about what I’m going to cook that day, but looking down at her I almost always smile. (It’s hard to smile at 3 am) I think the first time she looked at me and saw me, not just a blur of me was when I was breastfeeding. The first time she smiled at me was once she was done eating. Those few precious moments are mine, and mine alone and they are worth every missed drink or coffee or the moments of pain or discomfort.
I hope that my tips helped! I would LOVE to hear any tips/tricks that you may have about breastfeeding! PLEASE feel free to leave a comment. I promise to answer. I have also linked up my YouTube videos that I created with the same topic 🙂
Video in English:
Video in Polish: