We are bombarded with breastfeeding advertising, sure it is very beneficial for both baby and mother but it is difficult and for some mothers not possible.
When I was expecting my baby a mother said to me; “the success of breastfeeding depends on the size and shape of your breast”. When I asked if this was true in my antenatal class, I was told that it was not. I was told that all mothers could breastfeed and that those that didn’t, were either lazy or not wanting too. Well this is not true, and it was the worst advice I received. Those words made my first months as a mother very difficult.
When I had my daughter, I had no family support, in my naivety and misinformation I thought that to breastfed all I had to do was to put the baby on the breast, and the rest just happened. Little I knew that my baby didn’t have enough food, and that she was getting weak and sleepy because of it!
On the day we were due to be discharged from the hospital, the nurse came to see Indigo and she was immediately concerned on how yellow Indi looked. Upon doing the jaundice test, they noted her levels were alarmingly high and was immediately put in the UV lights chamber.
As it turned out I didn’t have much milk supply and thus was starving my beautiful baby. But I was brain washed and I thought to be a good mother, I had to breastfeed. For 4 months I was pumping constantly, taking domperidone, hardly sleeping, completely segregated from the world and hating being a mother. I was petrified that Indi wouldn’t have enough food and that I may loose her, but I couldn’t bottle feed solely because to be a good mother I had to breastfeed.
Well I am here to tell you that is rubbish . The main concern is that baby feeds whether it is from the breast or bottle. My little lady thrived better on the bottle than she ever did on the breast.
I am not arguing that breastfeeding is great, but it is not fair that mum’s that can’t or don’t want to breastfeed are made to feel like the worse parents.
Here is what I learned on that chapter as a mother:
1) if you have low supply domperidone tablets are great. Please see a doctor and discuss this with them. I am not a doctor myself and am only talking by experience.
2) pumping helps but you have to do it regularly.
3) latching baby properly is essential. I personally didn’t do very well on this. But there are tons of resources out there to help you with this. I found this website specially helpful http://breastfeedingtoday-llli.org/sore-nipples-when-breastfeeding/.
4) drink loads of water.
5) keep your nipples moist. I used Lansinogh nipple cream. It was brilliant!
If this is how you want to feed your baby that is great!. If however you want to bottle feed here is what I learned:
1) bottles and teats vary in shape and size, to find the one that fits your baby you may have to try a few. I personally really liked the classic avent bottles, other mother I have spoken to have recommended Dr brown baby bottle and avent natural bottle.
2) the microwave steriliser is super easy to use.
3) I pour boiled water into the bottles before I went to bed, so that all I had to do in the middle of the night, was put in the milk powder, heat up the bottle, feed the baby and back to bed. Keep the bottles with water at room temperature.
4) at around 4-5 months I started to train Indi to sleep through the night. I would feed her at 7 pm, then would dream feed her at 10.30. Slowly that dream feed was brought forward until it was at 8pm, then we started to reduce the amount of milk offered. For us this really worked.
5) we found that gold formulas gave Indi loads of wind. I have since found out that those formulas have more ion and this could produce colics.
6) for Indi S26 new born stage worked until she was one. Stage 2 also gave her loads of colics. Once again they have more ion.
To all those wonderful mothers, no matter if you choose to bottle or breastfeed the main goal is to feed the baby. So be kind to your self and do what better works for you and the family x