Good morning, friends! It’s been a while since I last shared about my breastfeeding journey and so I’d love to share with you how it’s been over the last few months! Breast feeding has been such a beautiful experience for me. But it hasn’t always felt that way. It’s been a unique journey with each of my kids. I chose to breastfeed for only 6 weeks with my 1st baby. I didn’t pump to stimulate a greater supply when I supplemented with a bottle and I honestly didn’t know what the heck I was doing, haha. When I found out I would be delivering twin babies less than 2 years after having my 1st, I knew I wanted to educate myself and breastfeed since 20 bottles each day sounded exhausting! Of course, nursing twins was just as exhausting haha 😉 But I personally LOVED it and worked through the low points because it felt 110% worth it. One twin weaned herself at 14 months and I weaned the other twin when he turned 18 months. I don’t have any plans for how long I’ll nurse Avery. Like everything else that comes with family life, I trust I’ll know when it is right to close that chapter (and cue the tears!).
I was SO thrilled to hear Lansinoh created a free Helpline app! You can get instant help from your smartphone from board certified Lactation Consultants with challenges like pain and latching issues, low milk supply, returning to work, and more! And a really cool feature is the app pairs with bluetooth technology to connect your Lansinoh Smartpump! It can track your breast-pumping sessions by recording the volume of milk each breast pumped. The app automatically stores the information allowing you to see trends in your supply. It’s brilliant!
Pop on over to my Instagram for your chance at winning the GIVEAWAY for a Smartpump + 1 month subscription to TWO WINNERS! It’s the perfect gift to any pregnant or breastfeeding mama!
The first month of breastfeeding Avery was tough! I’ll share some things I wish I had known prior to having babies. Aside from having a uterine/kidney infection for the first 1-2 weeks post-partum, I experienced typical breastfeeding struggles that I had with my other babies. Here’s a list + some solutions:
- IT HURTS. At least for the 1st month. The nipple sensitivity was pretty wild for me. Lansinoh has a nipple cream I used religiously for all 4 babies. It definitely helps!
- KEEP BABY ON AREOLA. Do not do not do not let your baby nurse on the nipple alone. Baby’s mouth needs to be on the entire areola to avoid poor latch and cracking/bleeding.
- REPLACE PADS OFTEN. Avoid letting your breast pads stay moist to avoid sensitive nipples and to prevent yeast infections such as thrush.
- LOW SUPPLY? Nurse more and for long stretches. For that first month, aim to nurse for at least 15 minutes on each side. Try not let baby fall asleep after nursing for only 10-15 minutes. Also, pumping after a nursing session will stimulate the supply.
- HEADACHE RELIEVER. It surprises me every time. I’ll begin nursing Avery while I have a headache and a few minutes into it I’ll feel a rush through my head and my headache is gone. Nursing also makes me tired. It can feel a bit draining, literally. But in the sweetest way.
- I NEVER KNEW HOW MUCH I’D LOVE IT. Biggest understatement of my life. I had no idea. Before I fell in love with it, I didn’t understand why some mothers were passionate for it. And if I’m being totally honest, (which y’all know I never hold back) I didn’t realize how proud it’d make me feel. The moments I’m feeding her, I feel like I’m finally doing something perfectly well. I’m not losing my patience and temper, I’m not screwing up one single thing. Hallelujah. And so I feel utterly grateful to be her mother and that I’m giving her what she needs to the absolute best of my abilities. And if that happened to be a bottle full of formula, I’d be just as proud of that too. There’s something calming about locking eyes with a baby while feeding them. Fed is best.
Avery still nurses every 2.5-3 hours and so I tend to pick the outfits that are nursing-friendly. I’m SO grateful that most people respect nursing mothers! I’m super comfortable breastfeeding Avery whenever and wherever it’s time to feed her. I do my best to not let a nip slip while she’s latching out of respect but Avery is MUCH more distractible when she hears noises. Which means she tends to pop on and off, haha. I bring this ring sling wherever I go and sometimes will have her nurse in it, especially on dates or to church! You can view a few of our snapshots as we headed out for church. I love to see each of the kid’s personalities caught in the pictures. I have a solid hunch these exact photos will make me teary when these darling have grown a few more feet.
Thanks Lansinoh for partnering for this post!