Breastfeeding is so fulfilling, but it’s not always sunshine and rainbows. Today marks my 13th month of breastfeeding, my breastfeeding journey started January 3, 2019. Even when I was young, there was no doubt in my mind that I would breastfeed my baby when I become a mother. I thought it’s easy but, it’s not. I had trouble latching. I asked for the help of Nurses and our Pediatrician to teach me about proper latching, but still it’s very difficult for me. I even raised my voice to my newborn because he kept on crying and I’m also crying because I don’t know what to do. I don’t even know how to carry him properly because he is so tiny. I had a rough first few weeks, it was depressing and I felt a bit like a failure. It became more depressing because there is no support system, my mother and my aunt told me that I should alternate breast milk and formula milk. I don’t know what is their reason, there are a lot of mothers who don’t want to breastfeed their child because they are very conscious to their body, or that they are working and have no time to breastfeed their child and there is me very determined to breastfeed my child and then here they are telling me to give my child a formula milk. Don’t get me wrong mommies, I don’t have anything against mommas who don’t want to breastfeed their child. Your child, your rules! The people around me constantly tried to convince me that my son was crying because he was hungry. They told me that I wasn’t feeding him enough, but I’m a pretty stubborn person, especially when it comes to doing what is right for my baby. I didn’t listen to them, I trusted my mother’s instinct and continue to exclusively breastfeed my child. Also, thank you to the members of the breastfeeding groups that I joined in Facebook for giving me more knowledge about breastfeeding.
Breastfeeding is not a joke and it takes a lot of effort. Another reason why breastfeeding became so challenging is because I’m a working mom back then. I need to woke up at 4 a.m.,(ugh! that is my weakness. I’m not a morning person.) one hour earlier to my routine every morning to do power pumping.
If you want to boost your milk supply fast, power pumping can help by creating an artificial high demand for breast milk. By increasing the number of times you pump, you give your body the message to increase milk production. This happens naturally every time your baby goes through a growth spurt when frequent feedings signal your body to increase production.Helen Anderson, Chief Lactation Officer, Fairhaven Health
It is advised to do power pumping for 3 days, but I did it everyday for almost 1 year and it helped me a lot. Aside from power pumping every morning, I pumped at work every 3 hours, sometimes every 4 hours if there are many patients.
Sometimes, I think I’m being hard on myself especially when I’m so pressured because of my stash. I always want to make sure that my baby have enough milk supply in the fridge. It is not easy but I survived and I’m proud I did it for 1 year and counting.
Here’s some of my advice to breastfeeding mommies out there and to the future mommies
- If you are a working mom, Pump regularly. Nurse frequently. Always remember that less demand, less supply.
- Malunggay (Moringa), it is every lactating mother’s bestfriend.
- Take supplements to boost your supply. Disclaimer: We have different bodies. Not all the products that are effective to me are effective to all.
- Do not stress yourself. As it might be a reason on why we are having a supply dip.
- And the most important thing for me is, be dedicated! It’s 10% milk production and 90% dedication. I’m not as lucky as other breastfeeding mommies, I don’t have lots of milk supply. I’m just an enougher, but I always think that
Breast milk is best for babies. It is not called liquid gold for nothing.
And that is my motivation to achieve MY BREASTFEEDING GOAL:
TO BE A SUPERSTAR BREASTFEEDER!
– RIZEL ASHLEY LIWANAG