Breastfeeding as new mother

                 April 17, 2016, about 9 a.m. I received a call from my best friend. This was a call I long-awaited. She announced that she delivered a baby boy at 8:30 a.m. I was very glad to hear the long awaited news and almost jumped from my desk to go and meet them. Working hours seemed too long, but I couldn’t leave the office as I had a lot of important things to do. At last, I met my cute little pie, after a long day, they named him Abubakeer, he was born 3.9 kg and 52 cm. He was in deep sleep during my visit, I couldn’t stay forever so I went back home. I received a call after a while, my friend sounded upset and she asked about formula, after which she listened to my long speech about “no formula”, she only nodded, told that will try my advice and hang off the phone. I “whatsapped” her the information on breastfeeding, colostrum and etc.

                  Next day, I woke up with the feeling that I need to visit them on urgent base and couldn’t stay in the office. Headed to the hospital with a strange feeling, which I counted as missing feeling because I am very sensitive with babies. I had several excited snaps on my way to the hospital, cheerfully entered the room to find my friend, who looked quite bothered and a bit stressed. I started questioning her and found out that her son is not being properly breastfed as nurses claimed she has no milk (who has milk by the first day?), after a while I found out that he was given a formula immediately after he was born, when they were transferred to room, as well as in the evening (just before I arrived). The first formula was excused as “no other choice” as she had a C-section and baby was too hungry to wait. WRONG! Totally WRONG! I had a C-section too (my baby weighed 4630 grams with 55cm height at birth), planned one too, my husband was allowed to enter and he hold our son for almost 45 minutes with skin to skin touch by nurses around, who didn’t offer any formula, instead kept telling him “don’t worry, it’s a daddy and son bonding”. As soon as I got the stitches on and moved out of operation room, the nurses grabbed my noisy (this would be the softest word to describe his cried out the lungs voice) the little angel from my husband and handed over to me for a first breastfeeding session. It was not easy at all, I had a long post about my first breastfeeding session experience, but brilliant nurses hadn’t given up, 2-3 of them were on our head training both me and my son every time he was hungry. They shared unforgettable tips, taught all the actual positions and the most important calmed down both of us by every failure with a support and hope to achieve the perfect latch on with calm breastfeeding session. The reason is that breastfeeding is a skill to learn by hard work of both – mother and baby.

                         However, the nurses in hospital claimed that my friend has flat nipples and not producing “enough” milk, which reasons for offering the formula, made my friend believe in it and this is how they end up offering formula again and again (3 times in total during the first day). ATTENTION of all new mommies in here! NOBODY can produce mature milk on first days, all women produce COLOSTRUM which is milk too, but of different consistency and little in quantity. Colostrum is more than enough for the tiny stomach of a baby. Never believe nurses or doctors who tell, you have not enough milk by first days. Mature milk flow starts by 3-5 days only, if you exclusively breastfed from day one. Also, remember that milk flow depends on supply – demand “policy”, which means, as much you breastfeed from day one, this faster you get the mature milk flow and this more of it, you have.

Certainly I went straight to reception and talked to each and every nurse in there explaining the same steps and requirements over and over to make sure they follow them. I also spoke to OBGen doctor on the same, who came in for a round checkup, she was kind of ignoring me initially, but cooperated after a while and instructed all the nurses to not offer any milk except mother’s own milk to a baby.

                           I was still frustrated but didn’t waste my time and started taking actions to save their breastfeeding opportunity. It was extremely difficult. Hungry little angel was stressed and upset from not having a ready flow of his food in the mouth whenever I tried putting his mother’s breast in his mouth. He was latching on it but had no idea on the next step, as he almost forgot his natural reflex of sucking. My friend was very nervous and upset but tried to not show it. I was shaking and had the tear triggers in my throat but I had no dare to splash out my stress, as I was meant to support and train my friend who was disappointed but eager to save the breastfeeding.  I have no idea were from had I got my courage and calm attitude for these stressful two hours, yet I had the sentences rounding in my mind “WE CAN DO IT; this little angel will definitely learn; breastfeeding is an essential and me a pro-breastfeeding mommy, who researched, studied and tried exclusive breastfeeding with my worse condition of breasts can certainly help them; there is no way of showing any side of nervousness to them, my confidence will support and encourage my friend who is like a sister to me” After all the sweaty and stressful attempts, we were “blessed” seeing the little angel perfectly latched and enjoying mama’s breasts, which almost made my tears roll down my cheeks, but nada, I am confident and almost an “expert” on breastfeeding, no way I show a sign of freak I had inside to my happy and relaxed friend cuddled with her little angel. This was it! We did it. For the reassurance purpose, we tried removing and offering back the breast several times more, all of which it worked well.

                             I was overwhelmed, my heart was almost thumping out of my chest from the stress, freak, lost hopes and disappointment I experienced during the past two hours that I strongly hid from my friend. I needed some time to calm down and breathe out. After a while, I realized that I just helped one woman and her son to save the most amazing experience of motherhood and the first natural right of a human being. I felt proud of my own self (which is not modest at all, never mentioned that I am not modest at all, have I?) for not giving up and helping to establish the breastfeeding, of my friend who was not afraid of trying, of this little angel who adjusted to more difficult way though it was not comfortable and easy to him.

Important to know:

  1. Call the nurse for a help and support (if you are in the hospital). You may ask your husband’s help at home

  2. Be sited on the most comfortable position and start thinking of positive moments

  3. Choose the most comfortable breastfeeding position

  4. Hold your baby close to you keeping his/her head higher than his/her body. Make sure that his/her face is facing your breast

  5. Grab your breast with your thumb and pointing fingers in form of letter C. I’ve noticed that, most of the new mothers tend grabbing the breast in letter V form, this is wrong and will lead to bad latch on. Your grabbing is very important, so pay attention to it.

  6. Try squeezing your breast, above the areola (brown part) so little colostrum/milk appears on your nipple

  7. Let your baby smell your nipple and this will reflect him/her on opening the mouth, catch this moment and shove in your breast to his/her mouth making sure that he is latching on areola, not just a nipple.

  8. Remember of keep trying the steps 5-7, in case of latching off your breast or a wrong latch on.

  9. Don’t panic, be calm, remember, it is a skill to learn, which needs practice and patience.

  10. Don’t be nervous or upset. Your baby feels everything and reacts to all the feelings of yours accordingly

  11. Always swap your breasts, this will help your breasts to have an equal milk flow

photo_2016-04-18_23-52-55

August 23, 2014 (one month old)

 

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5 thoughts on “Breastfeeding as new mother

  1. AasiyahB

    It really upsets me that nurses and doctors are so incapable of providing the correct information. This doesn’t only happen in Dubai but in Canada as well and I’m sure all around the world. THANK GOD you were there for your friend and most importantly Abubakeer. My heart goes out to them. You did a fantastic job! I am also a big pro breastfeeding mommy and it’s in situations like this, where a new mom is not getting the correct information can potentially miss out on the best thing she can do for her baby! I applaud you again and again….

    ~Aasiyah B

    Liked by 1 person

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