I’m having a bad menses cramp today, so I was curling on the couch with a hot water bottle pressed to my stomach.
Sophea: Mommy, what’s the matter with you?
Me: I got period pain.
Me: Because I got period.
Sophea: What’s period?
Me: It’s when I got blood come out from me.
Sophea: Blood? But why? Are you going to die?
Me: No. It happens to every girl. When you’re big like Mommy, then you will have period too.
Sophea: So means I’m going to die too?
Me: Everyone is going to die, but not because of period.
Sophea: If you’re not going to die, then why you have period?
Me: It means that I don’t have a baby in my tummy.
Sophea: Why no baby? I like baby.
Me: Me too. But people don’t have baby in their tummy all the time.
Sophea: How baby go inside your tummy?
Me: When Mommy and Daddy love each other and we sleep together, then sometimes baby will go inside my tummy.
Sophea: But where that baby come from?
Me: It’s from Mommy and Daddy. We make it.
Sophea: What? You can make baby? You and Daddy got magic?
Me: It is kind of like magic. But it’s because of love.
Sophea: And love is magic?
Sophea: I don’t understand.
Me: You see, when Mommy and Daddy love each other, we feel love inside our hearts. And that love feels like magic. Sometimes when the magic is strong, Mommy and Daddy do a secret dance. From that dance, sometimes baby can happen.
Sophea: Happen where?
Me: Inside Mommy’s tummy.
Sophea: What secret dance?
Me: You know how you guys can’t go into Mommy and Daddy’s room? That’s why. It’s a secret dance for Mommy and Daddy only.
Sophea: So when Mommy and Daddy sleep in your room you do the secret dance?
Me: Yes. Well, sometimes. It depends.
Sophea: Okay. I don’t understand. Can I have a cookie?
I never thought this baby talk would come this early and it totally caught me off guard, least of all coming from Sophea. I thought Eros would be asking about it first.
I’ve had at least 4 things planned as my blog post.
But I haven’t had enough time to sit and commit to writing them that all I can do was scribble the ideas and thoughts and points in my notebook.
Eros and Sophia are down with fever this week and soon after Damien got it too. Then I got it as well because I’ve been staying up late to sponge-bath them and clean up after they’ve thrown up and all. On top of that I think I got food poisoning or at least a very bad diarrhea from something I must’ve eaten.
I really miss being able to write every nightbefore I go to bed but right now even as I write this, I’m struggling to keep my eyes open.
Damien is in his 6th week now and going through his second growth spurt so he’s cluster feeding at night. I’m thankful that it’s at night because at least I get to sleep while he nurses away. But it drains so much of my energy that I don’t have much left for the next day.
I know that once they’re older and when we’re back home and I’ve establish a routine or a schedule for all 3 of them, I will be able to blog and write as often as I did or at least more frequent than what I’m doing now.
Now I’m off to bed as I need to sleep before Damien wakes up for his marathon feed.
It’s day 22 and I think I’m about to have a mental breakdown.
Last week, I found out there is a small tear on my cesarean scar. Before that one corner of the incision hurt really bad that I doubled over each time I tried to get out of bed. It felt like someone was punching my sides whenever I moved in a wrong angle.
Then after a few days, I felt something wet at my scar and when I touched it, I yowled in pain for it felt as though my skin was tearing. When I looked at my fingers, there were some blood and pus. Of course I went straight to the doctor when I found out it was bleeding because I knew it was a sign of cesarean scar infection and I didn’t want it to get worse.
Then the fever started and I wasn’t able to get out of bed much. The doctor asked me to lie down as long as I can to avoid further tearing of the scar. She gave me antibiotics to stop the infection. Slowly the pain faded and there was lesser and lesser bleeding or pus coming out of the scar.
But because of that, my milk supply took a dive.
I have no idea why. It was safe for me to breastfeed Damien even though I was on antibiotics and I did breastfeed him during the time I had the fever. It was just somehow my body was making less milk. Due to that, Damien was constantly crying and fussing at my breasts because of the slow flow of my breastmilk.
Finally my mother said he needs to be supplemented with formula.
Everyone knew how hard I tried to not let Damien have any formula and I fought tooth and nail the first few weeks to get through all the engorged breasts and cracked nipples just so I could exclusively breastfeed Damien.
Mohen looked at me when my mother said that he knew I wanted to say no. But I also knew that there is no way I could make Damien full with the condition I was in.
So, finally I gave in.
And now, even after a week and I’ve recovered from the fever although not the muscle pain of the incision (infection’s gone away though, thank God), my supply is still low.
I’ve drank like a whole tank of water, I tried herbal remedies to increase milk supply, I drink fenugreek tea because it is believed to help boost milk supply, I try to relax and rest as much as I can but my milk is still so slow it comes out in trickles. Every time Damien nurses now, he tugs at my nipple and fusses because he can’t get the milk out fast enough to make him full.
I cry each time I had to supplement him with formula. It was like every gulp he drinks from the formula is killing me and I feel terribly guilty. Even with pumping, I can only squeeze out a few ounces.
The only comfort I have now is that Damien has the chance to breastfeed when he wakes up for his midnight feed. Since he sleeps for a few long hours at night, my milk has a chance to store up a little and it’s flowing quite fast for him to nurse and fall asleep on breastmilk alone. I know that some breastmilk is better than none (related article: Partial Breastfeeding) but it kills me to know that I can’t breastfeed him exclusively anymore.
I remembered how my milk supply was high during Eros and Sophia’s time but I wasn’t completely resolved to fully breastfeed them. I had no health issues that caused my milk supply to dwindle but I didn’t fully take advantage of the situation. And now, when I’m determined, things turned out differently.
I will try to stay positive so that my milk won’t go away completely. I know that I will give Damien as much chance to breastfeed as possible and will not resort to formula all the time to supplement him.
It’s frustrating that I’ve tried, I’ve bled, I’ve cried so much that first few weeks only to let up now.
But I will try to keep at it for as long as I am able.
As I’m writing this, Damien is breastfeeding. He has been cluster feeding today that I thought I would lose my mind.
Although there’s that bond everyone is talking about when it comes to breastfeeding, I feel cluster feeding really does push a mother’s sanity to the edge. I have not left the bed, much less left the room for the whole day except to go the bathroom to wash my face because I feel like if I breastfeed for a minute longer, I will probably gouge my eyes out.
Damien sleeps for long hours.
I know how newborns are not really supposed to be doing that but his max is about 4 hours so that’s sort of acceptable according to our doctor. Even so, I try to catch him during his REM (rapid eye movement) sleep and wake him up for a feed after 3 hours. Neither of my two kids slept as long as Damien does when they were newborns so I’m always anxious about letting Damien sleep.
It’s weird that I have to wake up a sleeping baby when everybody knows babies love to sleep. My mom doesn’t believe in waking up newborns to feed because she said they will wake up if they are hungry. But I know that if I don’t wake Damien up my breasts will swell because the milk is not drained and he is supposed to be doing that. I guess it really is about being cruel to be kind sort of situation when it comes to waking up a sleeping newborn for a feed.
The things is, I’m afraid Damien might have jaundice because the whites of his eyes are tinged with yellow albeit barely noticeable. And I know jaundiced babies are sometimes too lethargic to wake themselves up for a feed thus missing the vital nutrients they need to combat the jaundice at this early stage of life.
I’m bringing Damien for a check up tomorrow. I just really hope he is okay.
I haven’t done product review in a while so I would like to review something that I’m currently using.
Damien has been breastfeeding for a full week now and I’m so happy that we haven’t introduced to him a single drop of formula. Although I never feel that breastfed babies are superior to formula-fed babies, I’m just happy because I’ve always wanted to exclusively breastfeed since Sophia.
I attempted breastfeeding with all 3 children of mine and I used nipple shield at the earlier stages of breastfeeding.
I used nipple shield the first time with Eros because my nipples were rather short then and he couldn’t latch on properly. With Sophia was because she was nursing so often my nipples were sore and cracked and with Damien it is simply because I used it with Sophia and it made breastfeeding so much easier.
There is, of course, a wide range of nipple shields sold but I’ve used only 3 brands so far and so my review will be based on these 3 only.
1. Pigeon Rubber Nipple Shield
I used this when I was breastfeeding Sophia. What I like about this nipple shield is that the tip of the shield where the nipple should be isn’t hardened like some nipple shield. The texture is consistent all over so it’s very pliable and fits into the baby’s mouth perfectly. Because it’s made of rubber, it needs to be washed with soapy water immediately after use or otherwise milk deposits will gather and accumulate on the inside of the nipple shield. I ruined one because there were several occasions I forgot to wash it right after use during midnight feeding. Although it’s a little big and the color is not at all conspicuous (as it is the color of latex rubber), I used it for quite some time as Sophia adapted to it immediately.
2. Anakku Silicone Nipple Shield
I am currently using this when breastfeeding Damien. Unlike the Pigeon rubber nipple shield above, this one has its tips hardened so your baby may have a little difficulty at first in adapting it into his/her mouth. I like how the rest of the shield is and how it fits perfectly to your areola, giving it a firm grip and do not come off during breastfeeding. However because of the hardened tip, it may take some time before your teat can fully fill the nipple area. It can cause a little discomfort for the first few seconds but once steady suckling is established, you can hardly feel that you’re wearing a shield.
3. Avent Nipple Shield
I used this when I was trying to breastfeed Eros. Avent carries two types of nipple shield – a soft one and a hard one. We bought the soft one as it was our first time trying out a shield. For me, it is still hard for an infant’s mouth. Although the silicone is of a good grade, this is a shield that I liked least. I find that it slips off easily and my son had a hard time adjusting the hardened tip into his small mouth.
Using nipple shield is entirely up to the mother.
Some lactation consultants swear off nipple shield like the plague because it doesn’t help the baby to natural suckle and learn to breastfeed on his own. However, for breastfeeding mothers with sore, cracked or inverted nipples, nipple shields are a heaven sent.
For me, I find it useful in the early stages of breastfeeding, those first few days home from the hospital when your milk just coming in and your breasts are engorged to the size of melons. But once my child has gotten the hang of breastfeeding, I discontinue using them.
What do you think of nipple shield and have you ever used them? Share your experience and which one do you like best!
I was thinking of writing about breastfeeding rights (again) last few weeks because I came across (yet another) article about how mothers are still having issues about being able to breastfeed in public.
Then I thought there’re already so much written on it that maybe if I do, it’s just going to be another disgruntled mother’s rant about breastfeeding and no one would really care.
Then I realized that it’s not.
I realized that it’s not going to be just another mother’s disgruntled rant about breastfeeding in public because mothers are still taking the brunt of hostility towards breastfeeding. It is still hard for many people to detach sexual association when it comes to women’s breasts.
That is why it is easier and more comfortable for most, not only for men but some women alike, to think of breasts as sexual objects rather than their other functional purpose.
A friend shared it and everyone thought it was funny and naturally sexually insinuated comments followed.
At one glance it looks like a finger was holding the labia of a woman’s shaven vagina open.
Upon closer look it obviously is not.
It’s just a sideways photo of a man hooking his finger at one corner of his mouth.
The fact that this photo was not offensive to so many disgusts me. What’s worse is that when I tried to report this photo as inappropriate, the page was unavailable. Apparently it has got something to do with time-out issue or link broken or something like that.
I have made several reports of inappropriate contents material on Facebook before and there was no problem. But this one, even after several hours, the page was still unavailable. It could be of real issue but I find it annoying.
Then today, two of my friends on Facebook were voicing out their dissatisfaction about how they still feel chided for breastfeeding in public. Some of the comments they received said that most men are okay with breastfeeding in public.
As long as nursing cover is used. Or otherwise women should go to a nursing room.
And I thought, What does that got to do with anything?
Some babies do not like to be covered at all. Like Sophia. She hates having her head covered while I breastfeed her. She likes to look around and tug at things near her when she nurses. And for some women it’s just too bushing to go to a nursing room when your baby wants to be fed right away.
It’s just amazing (and pathetic)to know that people are so used to breasts if they’re behind low-cut blouses with plunging necklines or bursting out of the push-up bra but not when there’s a baby suckling from them.
I admit that some women do have more modesty than others where they do feel shy about breastfeeding so openly in public.
For these women, maybe the issue of breastfeeding in public isn’t so pronounced because they can understand why they don’t need to do it in public but I’m sure as mothers, they too would feel the pang of criticism towards other women who choose to breastfeed in public.
It caused an uproar when Facebook deactivated accounts of mothers who posted photos of them breastfeeding their child on the grounds that these photos contained inappropriate content. When the same mothers got their account back and posted photos of them in bras and/or skimpy tops just to prove their point, you guessed it! Facebook didn’t do anything about it.
You can see why these mothers are enraged, can’t you?
Shouldn’t photos of girls in bras or in one of those slit-down-the-middle tops to show off cleavage or even the ones who used their arms to cover their nipples be the ones that are taken down? Shouldn’t the accounts of these girls get deactivated instead of the account of breastfeeding mothers?
When I commented on the “labia” photo above on my friend’s wall, one of the replies I got was that our society is sick so I should just deal with it. I can’t believe that I should just “deal with it” when it comes to women being disgraced and made into obscene jokes.
I just read that the Breast Milk Baby doll is causing quite a stir. The concept of a doll making suckling sound when placed at the chest is thought to be creepy.
Kids need to be exposed to breastfeeding so they learn that there is nothing to be embarrassed about, nothing to hide about and there is absolutely nothing wrong with the act of breastfeeding, either at home or publicly.
The more kids learn how natural breastfeeding is the less sexual connotation is associated with breasts and hence making them accept and indifferent towards breastfeeding women in public.
As much as people are aware about breasts being functional in breastfeeding, to accept their multi-tasking concept is perhaps a little too much when it’s being done in public.
It shouldn’t be.
If people can see girls go out in skimpy clothes, then they can very well accept a decently clothed mother breastfeeding her child on a bench in a shopping mall.