Some of you may know that I have had trouble with breastfeeding in the last two weeks. Penny’s upper front teeth have finally broken through, and well… they’re rubbing me raw. She’s not biting me, and she doesn’t mean to hurt me. But over the last 8 months we’ve both become lazy with breastfeeding and her latch has suffered. When her latch suffers, I suffer!
I am not pain-free yet, but I’m making a great recovery, thanks to many people. All of the following ladies helped me with advice and suggestions on Twitter: @PeppermintPam, @zealandsmom, @BrookleenJ, @dsandbrand, @ckpwong, @bfmom, @DagmarBleasdale, @devaskyla, @AVeryGoodYear, and @fentonslee.
I also spoke to Melissa, aka Birth_Lactation by email. That lady is an utter fount of knowledge! She wished she had more suggestions for me, but didn’t have her books with her. But her list of suggestions was amazing! So many different positions to try that I had never heard of and never in my life would have thought of. Melissa and Melodie from Breastfeeding Moms Unite have an Ask an LC column they started recently. I definitely recommend reading the questions! Even better, subscribe to Breastfeeding Moms Unite and you’ll never miss a question.
This Wednesday, I got to be a Breastfeeding Demonstrator for a class of future maternity nurses. Well, what an opportunity that was! 2 other mothers and I got to speak to the class about our labour and delivery experiences, and how breastfeeding has been for us. We got to talk about problems we faced, the lack of support for breastfeeding, and so many other things. The message I wanted to pass to the class is that new moms in the maternity ward aren’t exactly in the best state of mind. Yes, sometimes you need to be forceful with them. But there is never a need to be a bully. I guarantee if you bully a new mom, that is one aspect of her experience that she will always remember – even if she doesn’t remember your name or what you bullied her about. Well, not only did I pass that on, I got to show the class exactly what it’s like to feed a newborn – with a few added pounds. With my painful nipple, and Penny’s poor latch, it was just like we were in the hospital when Penny was born. I needed to swaddle her nice and tight, like a little burrito. And I needed to put her up on top of a nursing pillow again. I haven’t used a nursing pillow since Penny was 6 weeks old.
And how did I go about getting the gig of demonstrating breastfeeding? My La Leche League leader (who facilitated my class to quit smoking last summer) asked for volunteers! She teaches the nursing class as well as everything else she does – quite the amazing woman really. Of course, being a LLL leader, she also gave me a few suggestions to help out with the bad latch thing.
All of these ladies were so helpful. For Fanfare Friday, I want to thank all of them! They encouraged and sympathized, cheered me on and calmed me down. I came so close to weaning Penny because a) the pain was so bad b) the pain wouldn’t stop even after a week. All of these ladies were tremendous in helping Penny and I continue our breastfeeding relationship. Thank you!