"Welcome to the Milk Mama Diaries Carnival (July). For this month, we join the National Nutrition Council - Department of Health in celebrating Nutrition Month with the theme "Isulong ang Breastfeeding - Tama, Sapat at EKsklusibo!" Participants will share their experiences in promoting breastfeeding or their tips on how breastfeeding should be promoted. Please scroll down to the end of this post and check out the other carnival participants."
It has been 11 months now. I am very thankful that our (Lyndel and me) breastfeeding relationship has turned into a smooth-sailing journey despite the rocky start. I plan to continue breastfeeding him until two or three years old. Hopefully, my milk supply would still be okay to keep up with my target.
Let me tell you what breastfeeding has done for me:
Breastfeeding has turned into a lifestyle for me.
- It has changed the way I dress (in a way). I have to always consider wether the new top or dress that I bought is breastfeeding friendly.
- I also made it sure that if I go somewhere during weekends, I can bring Lyndel with me or at least I won't be out of the house for a long time. These are small sacrifices that I don't mind doing
- I cultivated a relationship with my pump and have developed the confidence in pumping on the go. (in the office, in a car while shuttling to meetings)
Breastfeeding made me a more confident mom.
When Lyndel was born, I really didn't know anything about taking care of a baby. And because I had CS section, at first I didn't have the energy to carry him. I was lucky that my husband such a hands-on Dad. He was so good with the diapering duties and calming the baby. When my baby and I finally adjusted with our latch, it seems like everything turned out well. With my breastfeeding worries taking a back seat, I was able to embrace motherhood happily and confidently. It's an honor to be my son's source of food (especially during the first 4 to 5 months when his main source for nourishment was just my milk. He started on solids at 5 months).
Breastfeeding has become my advocacy.
Breast is best. There is no argument with that. It has become my passion to share this wonderful gift of awareness about breastfeeding to other women.
And the best way for me to promote it is to start with what I know, what I learned.
These are some of the things that I learned along the way:
There are a lot of resources out there for breastfeeding. Just because you have learned how to latch and feed your baby doesn't mean you have to stop learning more about it. Day after day, you’ll discover wonderful tidbits about breastfeeding. With more knowledge and awareness, you become more passionate to share this to others.
Talk to friends, involve friends
Just because I’m a breastfeeding Mommy doesn’t make me any different to my non-Mommy friends. Ever since I gave birth, I talk about it as if it’s the latest fashion trend, the latest Hollywood scoop, or the latest must-have gadget. Of course I mention it not in a listen-to-me-I’m-lecturing-way.As it turns out, I’ve been hearing my single friends say that they will definitely breastfeed when they become Mommies themselves! And take note, I haven’t even started convincing them about it. I was just merely talking about it and answering their questions. Kudos to my ever supportive friends!
Reach out to would-be Moms
Then of course, I have my Mommy-to-be friends (either for first-born or second-born). One thing that I learned to do is not to judge. It’s quite difficult not to because, almost on auto-pilot, you would say: “Why didn’t you breastfeed? Or “Why won’t you breastfeed? But really, the better approach is to be a compassionate listener. Listen first. Ask later. In most cases, In all of my conversations with the Moms who weren't able to breastfeed their first-borns, I always heard the same reason – “I didn’t have enough milk” And I always tell them, "you’ll have milk. There are just some things that you need to know. I'll send you some links and/or numbers". :) Then I continue on with my story to let them know that it is indeed possible despite some challenges. For all these Moms, it’s really just a bad of case misinformation. Either an elder discouraged her, she didn’t research, she didn’t know that there are available resources etc etc.
This brings me to my final bullet:
Let it be known that help is just a call, email, or text away. And even a cookie away! ):
There are support groups who are there to support breastfeeding moms every step of the way. In fact, it’s a special sisterhood! ):
For starters, we have:
- La Leche League is an international support group organization for expectant and nursing parents. Meets twice a month, every 2nd Saturday at Baby Co. Podium and every 4th Saturday at Mothercare Greenbelt 5 at 1030am.
- Kellymom – a trusted site for breastfeeding resources
- Chronicles of a Nursing Mom - Jenny Ong's blog dedicated to breastfeeding and parenting :)
- And of course, Mommy Treats (owned my by yummy mom friend Paola Loot who bakes yummy lactation treats for Moms to increase their milk supply.
So there, breastfeeding is indeed one special sisterhood! :) We all have the same goal of nourishing our babies. It’s nature’s gift to us. Let’s promote it!
I am your breastfeeding friend. Let’s talk milk. :)
Here are the other posts from my breastfeeding sisters: