Tag Archives: breastfeeding

When My Daughter Was Ready To Let Go Of Breastfeeding But I Wasn’t

It was my 2nd week post partum when the discomfort had begun. My nipples were so sore and sensitive that I had lamented about not having the strength to continue breastfeeding in the presence of my lactation consultant. And here I am, writing about my breastfeeding journey of 3 years today! I don’t know if words can do justice to this journey which has been exigent and fulfilling, with steep falls and euphoric highs. But, it’s only these words which can prove to be cathartic for me in my current state of dishevel.

More than a year back, I had penned a blog post titled “Breastfeeding – The Natural Phenomenon That Does Not Always Happen Naturally”. Breastfeeding is as natural as it is a learned activity. Though nature has designed it to happen instinctively between a mother and a child, more often than not it takes practice and a number of permutations and combinations to get the position, latch and technique right.  Like most new mothers, I have had my share of struggles and moments of self-doubt in the first year of breastfeeding. It started with nipple sensitivity and soreness, and then when that settled down after figuring out the deep latch technique through online tutorials and forums, uncertainty about the adequacy of my milk supply crept into my mind due to frequent demands of feeds from my daughter. When access to the right support and information helped curb this apprehensiveness, my little one started teething and then began the biting and clamping which led to bruising and excruciating pain. I had to pump milk using a breast pump so that I could give my nipples time to heal and my mother would feed breast milk to my daughter through a feeding bottle. All these hurdles coupled with the fatigue resulting from sleep deficit and body ache bogged me down completely at that point. I had almost decided to give up on breastfeeding. The constant twinge, the feeling of being thwarted and the frustration came out in the form of tears practically every night. Then I happened to read inspiring stories of mothers who managed to breastfeed for years in spite of all the hardships on a breastfeeding support group on Facebook. Something changed after that. Something within me gave me the courage to carry on. I tried some hacks suggested by experienced mothers to reduce the biting and clamping, and gradually my tiny tot got the message and stopped doing it. By the end of our first year, breastfeeding had become a comfortable and effortless experience for both of us, and I decided to continue breastfeeding till the time my daughter self-weaned.

Down with flu? Breast milk is not the carrier of your infection

//This article has been sponsored by Dettol and was first published on mycity4kids. Below is the link to it:

https://www.mycity4kids.com/parenting/my-voice/article/down-with-flu-breast-milk-is-not-the-carrier-of-your-infection

The other day I was at a friend’s place to meet her 3 months old daughter for the first time. Her adorable infant was asleep with an endearing expression on her face which made me nostalgic. We settled down for our candid tete-e-tete which was primarily centered on parenting. Like most new mothers, my friend had several queries and doubts about various aspects of parenting which she wanted to clarify with me and seek my opinion on.  I could gauge that she was feeling under the weather and when I checked with her, she mentioned that she was down with the seasonal flu.  She had been coughing and sneezing since a couple of days due to which she was advised by a friend to refrain from breastfeeding so that she doesn’t pass on the infection to the little one through breast milk. She paid heed to the advice and as a result of this, started giving her daughter formula milk which was causing much agony to the baby who only wanted mother’s milk. I was taken aback when I got to know about this and immediately requested my friend to feed the baby without any hesitation. I assured her that her breast milk would not infect her daughter and also shared a few links with her with practical and useful information related to breastfeeding.

Many a times, when a breastfeeding mother falls sick, the first thought of uncertainty that crops up in her mind is whether she can safely breastfeed or not, lest she transfers the illness to her child. But the fact is that it is safe to breastfeed a child in case of most illnesses and even if one is in two minds about it, it is best to consult a professional rather than just going by hearsay and unnecessarily depriving the child of breast milk. Professionals maintain that breastfeeding when one is down with flu, etc in fact passes on the antibodies generated in our body to fight the infection to children which aids in building their immunity.

Yes, I Am Still Breastfeeding My Toddler. No, It’s Not A Bad Habit.

// This article was written as a part of “Stop Judging” campaign carried out by www.mycity4kids.com and is also available at below link:

https://www.mycity4kids.com/parenting/my-voice/article/yes-i-am-still-breastfeeding-my-toddler-no-its-not-a-bad-habit-stopjudging

If you are a breastfeeding mother, then you must have heard the following questions or advices umpteen times.

“Are you still breastfeeding your toddler? Stop doing it and wean him/her quickly. It’s a bad habit which they need to get rid of soon”. 

“Your milk is not sufficient and the child needs top milk for nutrition and strength. “

“Breast milk is just water after a year.” 

“You still nurse to sleep? Don’t be lazy to put your child to sleep by other means.”

“Isn’t is embarrassing when your child tugs at you for a feed at a public place?”

And so on and so forth. Phew!

Well, my daughter is almost 26 months old and we are still having a strong breastfeeding relationship. I nurse her to sleep most of the time and though the frequency of the feeds has reduced, I have no intention to wean her off my milk anytime soon.  While there is so much noise and judgement surrounding formula milk and formula feeding mothers, the ones like me aren’t spared either. I met someone a couple of days back who casually inquired about my daughter’s diet. The conversation steered towards the brand of milk I use and I informed the lady that I still primarily rely on breast milk for my daughter along with the usual solid foods, of course. To say that the lady was aghast would be an understatement. She chided me on being a careless mother by depriving my daughter of good nutrition. She also didn’t hesitate to cross the line and stated that I am responsible for developing the bad habit of breastfeeding and nursing to sleep in my daughter even at this age, by giving in to her demands. Honestly, I was in no mood to debate so I just cut short the conversation and moved on.

Personally, I don’t get affected by people judging me for my choices as I take complete responsibility for what I do and I do it because I feel it is right. I also do my own research when it comes to parenting, hence I take such comments with a pinch of salt. But, I know there are many mothers out there who are constantly judged for everything they do as a parent and this takes a toll on them. There are many who don’t have the luxury of a sea of information at their disposal on one click. Such mothers, who are unfortunately not so well-informed, start losing confidence in their parenting skills after being the target of unnecessary and harsh judgements. Why do we need to do this?

Breastfeeding – The natural phenomenon that does not always happen naturally

//This sponsored article was written for Nestle’s “Help Moms Breastfeed” campaign conducted during World Breastfeeding Week 2016 and was first published at the below link:

https://www.mycity4kids.com/parenting/my-voice/article/breastfeeding-the-natural-phenomenon-that-does-not-always-happen-naturally

//This article has been published by ZenParent and is available at the below link:

https://zenparent.in/zencorner/breastfeeding-after-my-c-section-the-natural-phenomenon-that-does-not-always-happen-naturally

During the days of having a bun in my oven, like most expecting women, I used to spend a lot of time researching on all aspects of parenting. With vast information being just a click away these days, making an informed choice and making oneself aware about any matter has become relatively easier. But, on the flip side, the information overload can occasionally be the cause of mental mayhem. I was asked to read up on breastfeeding basics during my pre-natal classes arranged by my hospital, which I did very sincerely. However, to be honest, the theory that I read online became an “overhead” transmission of sorts as I could not really register the different feeding positions and latching techniques in my mind. My only important takeaway from all the exploration I indulged in was that breastfeeding is the best for a baby’s immunity and nourishment in the formative years. Hence, I had firmly decided that I will give my all to ensure that I can successfully breastfeed my baby. Whoever I spoke to during my pregnancy about breastfeeding made it sound like it is something that just happens naturally between mom and baby, and I assured myself that when my baby latches on, magic will happen.

Finally, the pivotal moment arrived and I was all set for a water birth. But destiny had other plans and it so happened that after hours of labour, I had to go for an emergency C-section. Luckily, I had a wonderful gynaecologist and doula, who were both breastfeeding friendly and they made sure that my baby latched on to me just a few minutes after we came out of the OT. I was not completely out of the effect of anaesthesia at that point so I could not feel much but I was told that my baby latched beautifully and this brought a huge smile on my face. Just when it seemed like we had nailed it at the first go, reality kicked in and I realized what breastfeeding is all about. From that day to now, I have completed 18 months of breastfeeding and I intend to continue till my child self weans. The journey has been nothing close to smooth sailing but has been tremendously rewarding and fulfilling. There were many instances when I had almost given up but I could sail through because of the excellent support system I had throughout. My husband, my parents, my in-laws and my friends have all been instrumental in making this milestone possible for me. I am sharing a few tit-bits based on my experience which I believe every new mom or would-be-mom must know and understand about breastfeeding, as that can save her a lot of grief later and help her establish a successful breastfeeding relationship with her baby.