Sunday, January 25, 2009
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
Thursday, January 15, 2009
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 ;)
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
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.
Am I doing this right?
Is she breathing.
This is just where she fits.
Little rosie face, little pink mouth, hot small breathes.
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
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
Saturday, January 10, 2009
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...