Monday, November 9, 2009

Long Over Due

If you check here, so sorry that I haven't been posting. I guess breastfeeding has been something there in my life, but not on the front lines. It's the thing that I do daily without thinking. The way you brush your teeth. Not something you think to write about. So I've forgotten to journal here, even though it's still apart of my everyday. An important part, that I still want to share.

My almost 20m. old is still breastfeeding everyday and it doesn't seem to be ending. Her interest in it is still strong. She mainly nurses before sleep times (nap and night) and then on busy days she'll nurse once or twice in the day (more on quieter days). I'm content with this. Food is such a big thing in our daily lives, the nursing/milk just seems to be a sweet nurishing moment for her and I. She'll also ask in the night sometimes still...and the very early mornings. These are the times I've been ready to give up. Sickness, tiredness, travel and teething play a part in these times not being cut out. It's time to start regulated a better routine (for a more rested mom).

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Undecided Plan

These last few days I have been adding in more and more liquids for my girl to sip out of a sippy...not the breast. She has always liked soy milk, teas and water, so this has been easy. I've been giving us both extra vit. C and Echinacea in these teas. Right now we both are at the end of a cold/flu so it's been a good reminder to add more fluids during the day anyway.

My thinking has been that the more she drinks, the less she will come to me and ask to nurse. This has not been the way it's been going. Maybe in the day a but, not at night though. I'm not trying very hard to say no, I just wait until she's asked a few times before nursing. At bedtime I will nurse a bit before and then give her chamomile tea after story etc. Middle-of-the-night-times have been going about the same though-about 2-4x during the night and early morning. My pain has been subtle, but still there.

I realized after the last post I made, that it might be extreme for a few reasons. Extreme to hold off weening if in serious pain. Extreme for wanting to ween when some days are tolerable still. Extreme for not trusting that she'll be healthy and strong even if we stopped this week. Extreme to be upset and emotion about this. Really not decided...Can you tell?

One thing I do know, is that when she has wandered over to me in the last few days saying "Mama, Mama" and I have pretended that I don't know just what it is that she's been heart breaking. She finds her way to my lap, hangs her head down low and nuzzles in and starts to ask even sweeter in a soft little way. "Mama? Mama?" And I know that we aren't finished with this yet.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Is it time...?

This is a difficult post for me to write because not everyone that reads what I write understands fully how much this means to me and my children. I have been thinking that I have to ween my 14 month old from breastfeeding. This might seem like no big deal, but to is. She still nurses many times through out the day, it's her main source of liquid besides some water and tea here and there, she really enjoys it, asks for it, and it is one of those tender times for the two of us each day. She eats loads of good food and meals with us, just like her big sister, but this is still something I feel is so important for her that I might be taking away.

There are so many reasons to keep with nursing, that most know already so I don't have to go into it. But the reason for stopping this phase of her *babyhood* (and her nutrition!) is because of the pain that I'm still experiencing with the overgrowth of yeast and Candida. (She finally is rid of the thrush aspect of it, and it might not be long before she gets that from me again.) Sure, right now my system is down and I'm feeling more weakened and prone to the discomfort from having the flu, but I really feel like I can't do this anymore. The pain is something that I have been trying to ignore and really can't anymore.

In writing this, I'm not sure if I will post. Not because I am shy of talking about breasts...after all this is what this blog is for ;) But because I'm not sure if I want to admit to the world that I'm cutting my girl off. It means THIS much to me. My first went until age 2, the littler one should as well. (I would have nursed long with my first, but she was the one that was pretty much done-that's not the case right now.) I haven't completely decided this, and it's not going to come easily between her and I, but this might be the next phase to better health for myself (ironically after all that breastfeeding does) and my girl.

Every mother has their reasons for nursing a little bit, a long time, even longer, or not at all. I understand this and always want to respect it. When it comes to my children and what I know in my gut about how to care for them, I feel like I have all the right to judge myself. This has been something so important in her first year of life and can possibly be for longer. I'm just expressing my feelings as I try and decide what to do. I can't imagine giving her cow's milk in place of mama's. It's that simple. She does drink a lot of soy, but with that I haven't replaced the breast. If this is the next step, I have to think about as not replacing, but just a new way of giving her a complete diet. Either way, a bit of morning comes from this mama.

SO this is what is on my mind. As I sit with my sleeping girl next to me, typing, knowing that she's going to ask for mama's milk soon to fill her tummy up again after a long nap. I want to give this to her. It's as natural to me as watching her grow, and loving her.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Good (and bad) Breastfeeding News...

...women who breastfeed for over a year have a 10% lower risk of heart disease, heart attack, and stroke. Read full news story here.

I know that I need to take some time to record how BFeeding has been going in my own life, especially since this is a "log" for that ;) and I have been going through quite a time lately in this "department". Here's a post I wrote abut the Yeast-thrush-battle my 13 month old and I have been dealing with.

Tonight, though feeling a lot better then I have been, I still am cringing with the thought of another night of night feedings. My little one is better, but I still have infected breasts and the pain feels very deep and makes the nights long, even when she only wakes a few times. Hope to have a more upbeat post soon. I'm just trying to take care of my health and continue healthy breastfeeding...

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Sunday, March 22, 2009


If you are interested in the "politics" of BF...Rixa links some interesting posts.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

I wanted to share this sweet pic...

Friend J with new baby just a few minutes old nuzzling in right away!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

4 posts in one day-wow!

I just wanted to link to the book Giveway here.

Breastfeeding with Comfort and Joy: A Photographic Guide for Mom and Those Who Help Her, by Laura Keegan

I'd love to read this book-will have to find it if I'm not a winner...=)

So much to read...

I hate to admit it, there are so many times when I come on here to write a post and then end up spending the time reading through the blog roll (on the rt.) of breastfeeding blogs, posts, and news. It's always inspiring to come across stories or pics of breastfeeding...also, interesting to hear what's going around in the news about it. So funny that people are still shocked or surprised when they hear women or families talk openly about BFing...ARE YOU KIDDING!?! We sure do a lot of talking about food all over the world. Or about newborns! This can be such an important part of a newborns life. In my mind, they go hand in hand. Don't you agree??!

Sorry for Disappearing

To be honest, when I started this blog I thought that I would have more to write about...or should I say, more TIME to write about breastfeeding. But don't give up on me yet (if there are mom's out there checking in with me...otherwise, I'm telling and reminding just myself).

My disappearing act means that things in the nursing department are going well and just flowing naturally so I really haven't taken the time to think about how things are. This is not to say that I don't have lots of little moments of gratitude for the fact that my, now one year old, is still enjoying this time with me as well as benefiting from human milk. Something that I'm so happy my body is able to give her.

Something that I wasn't sure would happen so smoothly with this one because we still have those days where she's not interested in stopping to nurse. Her life is just TOO interesting and she's on the constant move keeping up with her sister. Often during the day we have little struggles with each one another to get her to settle into my lap for milk, but the night time nursing seems to be a favorite. (We are working on the night waking by having daddy put her to sleep after a good long nurse and not always MOM.) Then, on other days, it can happen that she wants milk at the most inconvenient times (checking out at grocery store, when I'm having a serious conversation with a someone, maybe a man that I'm just not sure about nursing around, or of course-in the car as I'm driving.) All these things I can live with though, and I'm pleased that I now have a little one year old that still comes to mama for milk.

On the other side of it, I'm also grateful that my body is healthy and continuing to produce the milk for my girl. I still have to remind myself that drinking water all day is going to help this. How can something as simple as drinking what be hard to remember?? The same way that it's hard for the little one to settle down and drink when there is just so much to DO!

We made it to ONE YEAR!

Here's my little "nurser" on her birthday.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Teething=Night Nursing

So I think that I equate the extra nursing at night not only with the energy and busy play little one has in the day, but with teething because 3 new teeth have popped up in the last 2 days! She has actually cut down eating food at meal time and has been asking to nurse throughout day the last 72 hrs. more then usual. Not sure what this means for sleep though (not so good last night). Shall see tonight...

Now I have to be making more milk in the day because she's asking for it. It hasn't been comfortable because she's pulling and trying out those new teeth (biting can be another whole post!), but I also think she's wanting more actual milk. One thing, is that my intake of water makes a HUGE difference in my milk production and I have to remind myself to drink drink drink.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

3 year old's watchful eye

Friday we went to our Parent/Toddler class we go to every week and when we walked in, there was a new family there. The new little girl said hi and "I'm 3". My little girl said, "I'm 3 too!" They seemed to play nicely the rest of the morning and then at some point the little girl visited her mama's lap to nurse under a cover-up just after her little brother had. My daughter was all eyes and watched very closely as if she had never seen a child nurse before. (what??!!) She was actually hovering a bit, but that's what they do I guess. Once that was done, the play didn't seem to continue together between our two girls, but I didn't really think much of it.

Later that day, we were home and I was nursing little sis and big sis came over and said, "Mom, remember that little girl that had mama's milk under the blue scarf? She's not 3. It's too bad." She said it so very matter-of-fact that I just let it go and thought to myself about how she had come to that conclusion. I wanted to tell her that some little girls that are 3 have mama's milk, but I didn't want to take away whatever status that she has built in her mind of being 3 and letting her little sister have this special thing with mom instead. I know her, she wouldn't dare ever ask for it because she's a "big girl" in her mind now. Then she leaned in and started kissing her sister while she was drinking and said, "I love to kiss her when she's having numa. " (this is what my girls call "nurse".)

This whole little thing was very sweet and I like to see that she is so aware of others and is comparing situations she witnesses to what she knows as her own reality. I'm not worried about her playing with the other little girl because everything like this is so short lived.

I feel it's tender that she likes to be close to her sister and I during a nurse because it makes it something that I share with both my girls.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

I like what Mama Knows Breast has to say today...

Sleepless Nights

Nursing has been going fine, without much new to write about. I have been noticing the lack of sleep from night nursing lately-not that this is a new topic. I just have been noticing as she nurses less during the day, she seems to make up for it at night. I am going to trying and get her to drink more of my milk during the day these next few days and see if it makes much of a difference in the night time pattern that we seem to have gotten into again. To be continued...

Thursday, January 15, 2009

2 BF Articles

Baby Food: If breast is best, why are women bottling their milk?

An excerpt:

In 1997, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued a policy statement on “Breastfeeding and the Use of Human Milk,” declaring human milk to be “species-specific” and recommending it as the exclusive food for the first six months of a baby’s life, to be followed by a mixed diet of solid foods and human milk until at least the end of the first year. In that statement, and in a subsequent revision, the A.A.P. cited research linking breast-feeding to the reduced incidence and severity of, among other things, bacterial meningitis, diarrhea, respiratory-tract infection, ear infection, urinary-tract infection, sudden-infant-death syndrome, diabetes mellitus, lymphoma, leukemia, Hodgkin’s disease, obesity, and asthma. The benefits of breast-feeding are unrivalled; breast-feeding rates in the United States are low; the combination makes for a public-health dilemma. In 2000, the Department of Health and Human Services announced its goal of increasing the proportion of mothers who breast-feed their babies “at initiation” (i.e., before they leave the hospital) from a 1998 baseline of sixty-four per cent to a 2010 target of seventy-five per cent; until the age of six months, from twenty-nine per cent to fifty per cent; at one year, from sixteen per cent to twenty-five per cent. (The same targets were announced in 1990; they were not reached.) Attempts to improve initiation rates have met with much, if spotty, success. The Rush University Medical Center, in Chicago, which runs a peer-counselling program called the Mother’s Milk Club, has achieved an astonishing initiation rate of ninety-five per cent; nationally, the rate is not quite seventy-five per cent. More difficult has been raising the rates at six and twelve months. The C.D.C., which issues an annual Breastfeeding Report Card, has announced that for babies born in 2005 the rate of exclusive breast-feeding at six months was only twelve per cent (although the rate of some breast-feeding at six months had risen to forty-three per cent).

One big reason so many women stop breast-feeding is that more than half of mothers of infants under six months old go to work. The 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act guarantees only twelve weeks of (unpaid) maternity leave and, in marked contrast to established practice in other industrial nations, neither the government nor the typical employer offers much more. To follow a doctor’s orders, a woman who returns to work twelve weeks after childbirth has to find a way to feed her baby her own milk for another nine months. The nation suffers, in short, from a Human Milk Gap.

There are three ways to bridge that gap: longer maternity leaves, on-site infant child care, and pumps. Much effort has been spent implementing option No. 3, the cheap way out. Medela distributes pumps in more than ninety countries, but its biggest market, by far, is the United States, where maternity leaves are so stinting that many women—blue-, pink-, and white-collar alike—return to work just weeks after giving birth. (Breasts supply milk in response to demand; if a woman is unable to put her baby to her breast regularly, she will stop producing milk regularly. Expressing not only provides milk to be stored for times when she is away; it also makes it possible for a working woman to keep nursing her baby at night and on weekends.)

and maybe this is why I'm not a Facebooker ;)

Milk Alone

Today is one of those days when I'm just so grateful to have my daughter still nursing. We were out running around most of the day and her intake of "food" was minimal (basically tortilla and raisins) so being able to lean on my milk as at least her protein and warm fluids for the day makes me feel so much better. Sometimes it's hard enough to remind myself to stop and eat, and so hard to find healthy food out and about for the little ones. Luckily, I have lots of snacks on hand all day and (now) plenty of milk on hand anytime of day.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Good Morning Suck

This morning I'm thinking of the morning nurse. Now my little girl is feeling better and is back to her usual self-seems my milk is as well. She at a stage now of being so active and wild with adventure all day long that getting her to stop and nurse means that I have a very wiggly, still on the move, sucker that is there for a quick milk, on and off, and nothing extra. So the first nurse of the morning when she's awake and not ready to jump out of bed yet because she wants to say "hi, good morning, mom" with her eyes and hands-this is the sweet time that I get to flirt with her at the breast again (even when totally tired and hung over from her night wakings). Thinking of this today...this morning, after her big sis woke her up, she crawled over to me, nuzzled a "hi" and when nursing never broke the sweet gazing look with my eyes until she was filled with warm milk. A moment to remember. Then on to playing and poking, wanting to get off the bed.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Yesterday's thoughts on "Earliest Moments"

So this what comes to mind when thinking about the earliest, newest moment of breastfeeding my first girl. It's all a bit blurry, but this is why I have to write it somewhere. this (I have to write really fast tonight because SOMEONE WILL NOT stay asleep upstairs.)

first 5 minutes of putting her to my breast...
Hello, little girl.
Hello little head.
oh, little head.
So perfect, this little body naked against me.
Fits in just right.
oh, I'm a mother
oh, yes. This is the way I feed her.
She's sucking!
Am I doing this right?
Is she breathing.
She fits.
This is just where she fits.
Little rosie face, little pink mouth, hot small breathes.
Quickly sucking.
My little love pulling at my heart.

Hours of this, on and off and on again for those first 24 hours or so.

Then the not quite so magical time. When I couldn't sit up to hold her, so latch on was difficult. My milk came in so I was hot, sore, and blistery. I knew this was common and would just cringe at the thought of another session and hold my breath when she'd latch on. Turning in the sheets killed and the shower water felt like needles. All the time this little perfect face on my chest was trying her hardest to fill up and doze off in baby milk bliss.

This part felt like forever, but only lasted so long (about 2-3 weeks really) and then baby and I got our rhythm down and it felt like the most natural way to get to know my little baby. To feel her, look at her, and feed her.

Now that was the first time.
Number 2 was different, not so dramatic of a realization for me that I was actually FEEDING a little baby and that baby knew more of how to do it then I did! With the first pregnancy I was thinking about and anticipating breastfeeding a lot. I even was with mother's in those first feeding because I was being a doula during my preg, so it was a real fulfillment to get to practice it myself. With my 2nd baby, it just seemed life a natural flow that was just another part of the birth. I really don't think that I even thought about the breastfeeding part of baby until she was hear and breastfeeding. It all just moved together in a very easy and natural way.

I do have a that same memory of just this little warm head on my breast and looking at that little face and feeling that breath on me. Such a moment.

My milk coming in wasn't as big of a trauma for me this time. It came ASAP and boob maintenance wasn't so hard this time either. As it got painfully full after the first 24 hours, I got to pumping the top off my milk for 5 mins. before nursing and it made it much easier to handle let down and baby and the whole thing. As a friend said to me recently, you just have to take care of your boobs as another job that comes with the baby. It all works out after a bit when you get through the first week or so.

The rest is to be written about in this log...=)

Monday, January 12, 2009

Still more rest needed...

But as I get stronger, my milk has been coming back and baby girl seems happy with it. I didn't have the upset crying girl last night at bed time because of no milk, only because she's fighting a new problem. I'm happy my milk isn't the issue.

I have some fun ideas for this personal log-even if I'm the only one that might be reading it ;) it will be good for me. Will try to find time soon to write. To start though, I was reflecting on the first moments of ever breastfeeding and how tender, new, but natural to me they were. They also were a challenge, but one worth all the milk in the world. In quiet times in the house today I want to remember to write these down.

Too be continued...

Always feel free to share your first memory of nursing your little one. And always feel free to use this as a place to put your breastfeeding thoughts...

Sunday, January 11, 2009

More Milk

Last night she did get a bit more out of me and therefore slept better. Still very sore though. I don't feel the let down that I have all these months when she drinks. I was trying to not "nurse her to sleep" for these last few months, but now I am just wanting her to get as much as possible so I'm not going to worry about that again until later. The truth is, either way she's been waking up quickly and wanting to nurse again. Drinking and drinking over here hoping to lactate like my baby needs. I do have a little more faith in my body today...

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Deticated to Nursing

For my first post, I think I'd like to explain why I've created this blog now after nursing one child for 23 months and another for almost 10 months. I would have thought that all the good stuff to talk about would have past already...the learning how to manage baby on boob for the first time, your milk coming in, the pain and then the rhythm you two create, the beautiful bonding that goes on, the nurturing and the knowing that you are creating something so amazing for your little one, and on and on. This all all great to talk about and here can be a place (I hope). But I'm starting this also because I'm realizing now how I didn't "log" anywhere anything about my first daughter's nursing time and I'm now faced with issues with my second and I can't remember enough to compare (why is my memory so fuzzy-nursing though the night maybe??).

So here I'll try to keep a log-blog a bit and I really hope actually to get more of a dialog going with all the other nursing mother's that have stories and input on the subject as well. I find that on my other blog I can't go into it all honestly the way that I'd like to. My experience has been that mainly mother's whom are nursing or have nursed are wanting the ones wanting to hear about it. I know, it shouldn't be this way, everyone should feel breastfeeding is as natural as talking about food-and boy does everyone always talk about food! I need a place to write about this. I'd love to hear back about some things. And maybe we can educate some in the process.

I titled this post "Dedicated to Nursing" not because of the obvious. Though, yes, this blog will be about that because nursing and breastfeeding for so so many many reasons is beautiful and important. But the title is because in the last week my own experience has been changing and I have to rededicate myself. In my experience, something you do when nursing isn't easy and natural.

Last weekend I had a clogged duct in my breast which was very sore and we worked through it and caught things before a major infection developed requiring meds. That was just two days of soreness (followed by a cold). Now my issue is my milk is getting less and less. I'm pretty sure that she didn't get anything for two days because I was sick and dehydrated, but now seems to be getting a bit again. It's still not a lot because she'll nurse and nurse and get mad and bite or just cry because milk doesn't come. This is how she was tonight going to sleep. =( My breasts are feeling sore and bruised-quite different from the days of first latch on where you feel sore. Not having to pump since the early days when she was first born has made it so that when I turned on the pump, nothing came. Just hoping that she's getting more drops then I did in the pump. She's eating lots of food, water and soymilk-she just really wants her mama's milk. (I do too).

Anyway, more hydration, mama's milk tea, and trying to get rest are the remedies that I'm doing presently. This is clearly happening because I was run down. I going to give it more time, of course, but I wanted to hear if anyone out there has any advice...If not, then I'll at least have this entry on hand to look back on when this is all cleared up and milk is flowing again. =) Thanks for listening...