Saturday, April 16, 2011

my breastfeeding story

thought i'd share this story here on my new blog. enjoy reading!

[As posted last August 15, 2010 on Tumblr]

on breastfeeding

There are a couple of breastfeeding related articles that I’ve read already and stumbled upon for a while now and most of them say that it’s breastfeeding week/month this August.

Well, Breastfeeding week or month it is, I would also like to share my own experience about breastfeeding even if its just for a short period of time.

I gave birth March of 2009 (that was my 38th week) thru Caesarean section. And because I still had to recover hours after the operation, Mia was given formula milk at the nursery. The nurses and the doctors there said she feeds well. As much as I could recall, she feeds for two ounces every two to three hours.

I believe it was already almost the next day before I was able to stand and walk after the operation. It was also the time that I asked to be brought to the nursery to finally see my baby again after our cheek to cheek encounter at the delivery room. Few months before I gave birth until that day, I still dont have milk but i was very eager to try my first time at breastfeeding so the nurse at the nursery assisted me and told me that its okay for me to breastfeed even if i still dont have milk, according to them: in time and with continuous stimulation, milk would finally come out.

I went back and forth to the nursery for two days and thankfully, Mia has been patient with me at that.
We weren't able to room-in because the doctors said that we couldn't bring her back to the nursery anymore once we bring her to the ward. We decided for her to stay at the nursery until after 5 days from her birth date. That was because she was under observation and medication because I had UTI (urinary tract infection) during my 36th week but was cleared on my 37th. Good thing, she had negative results.

The day she’s scheduled to finally be home, we talked to her doctor, we were given instructions (bathing, feeding, etc.). We were also given take home formula milk in small can, one free small bottle of Dr. Edwards sterilized water and a few other freebies from the hospital’s sponsors. The milk by the way was credited to us thru our hospital bill.

At last, we’re on our own, the hubby, Mia and me. We took a taxi to finally bring us home.
With very excited new parents, Mia started to cry. Oh no! We didn’t bring a bottle for her formula milk. We’re in a taxi and on our way home which was 30-45 minutes away! I decided I have to feed her even if I still don’t produce milk, so I did it there during our taxi ride I just had to keep it discreet, the windows were not tinted. Good thing we brought the blanket a friend from the United States gave me that saved us from so much embarrassment.

Mia kept quiet the whole trip home as if she’s really getting milk from me. That continued until we’re home only I discovered I am actually starting to produce milk but the nipples got sore after continuous feeding. I was happy and at the same time sad then because we had to postpone breastfeeding for a day to recover from the soreness.

To make the long story short, I was able to breastfeed exclusively for two months because the time she tasted the breastmilk, Mia didn’t wan't the formula anymore.

Why only for two months? I was actually worried that I was directly breastfeeding and Mia doesn't want to be bottle fed, even more, she doesn't want formula milk anymore. I was worried because in three weeks, i’ll be going back to work and my problem is that I couldn't afford to not go back to work, I couldn't bring Mia to work too. In a week or two, we were able to make Mia feed thru bottle but also with formula milk (I would still breastfeed her whenever possible). We made her try different kinds of nipples available in the market and the one she ended up wanting is the peristaltic nipples of Pigeon.

Now, Mia still drinks milk from the bottle, she doesn't want to drink milk from the cup, she’s not yet ready—we’re taking our time. She’s taking formula milk again since I came back to work until now. She’s healthy. I’m happy I breastfed her even for just two months. Yes, I tried to pump but the supply was not anymore sufficient and I didn't invest on a good enough pump :(

If there’s one thing that I regret from that time and would want to change if I have the chance to is to educate myself about breastfeeding (direct and bottle).

When I was pregnant, I just relaxed and didn't think about anything else. I only thought of buying essentials for the baby and didn't think about my breastfeeding plans. I thought I’ll learn while I’m on it but it’s not the case.

I only learned a lot of things after I stopped breastfeeding my baby, that’s when I learned from online forums, blogs, and other articles I could find in the internet world that you could still breastfeed even if you’re working by storing expressed milk. If I knew all these things, i’ll do just that! And to the fact that it’s FREE! my baby’s milk cost us so much but I decided not to change it to the cheap priced milk alternatives because I also want the best for my baby, I don't want to compromise my baby’s health (you wouldn't know if she’ll have diarrhea or whatever if we change her milk, those kind of things). When it comes to my Mia, i’m paranoid as in. Well, i’m just a mother who wants the best for her child.

Whew! This is too long already, to sum it all up: I enjoyed my experience in breastfeeding and I would do it again the next time we’ll be blessed with another baby. The next baby could wait, for now, I just have to equip myself with more knowledge about this wonder (breastfeeding—free, clean, healthy!) and share this knowledge to my friends and colleagues and fellow mothers and mothers to be too. Happy breastfeeding!

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