Monthly Archives: November 2011

My Breastfeeding Experience

When Thomas was 13 days old, I decided that breastfeeding was no longer suitable for us. This was a hard decision to make and one that I agonised over for few days and felt disappointed about for a few days after that.

When Thomas came into this world, he had swallowed lots of fluid inside me and suffered really badly with mucus. He hardly slept or breastfed for the first few days. I thought breastfeeding was easy to begin with and wondered why so many people had problems with it. Yes, I was a little sore and found it uncomfortable but I knew it was my body getting used to the new thing it was doing.

When my milk came in and Thomas finally cleared the mucus, things began to change. He became constantly hungry all the time. He would take an hour and a half to feed with a couple of breaks during the feed, then an hour and a half later he would want feeding again. I had no energy and just felt tired and upset all the time. I did not feel myself at all.

I spoke to the midwives and my friends on Twitter who ensured me that things would get better so I kept going for a few more days.On day 11, we had the first visit from the health visitor. She made me feel better as she said any breastfeeding was better than none and I had done well to last as long as I had.

I lasted one more night then on the afternoon of day 12, I cracked and asked my neighbour with a 10 week old for some formula. I gave Thomas one bottle and he then slept for 4 hours straight. This was the most he had ever slept in one go. We did not know what to do with ourselves.

Still unsure of what to do and feeling very guilty for giving Thomas formula, I called my friend and breastfeeding buddy, Mandy. She came round and checked that my breastfeeding technique was right and it was. We discovered that Thomas was using me for comfort as a dummy. We discussed the situation for a while and as Mandy said, if breastfeeding was easy then we not need buddies for it.

I decided to give Thomas more formula in the overnight feeds so we could get some sleep. I do not like making major decisions when I am very tired. The next morning, I expressed some milk off. It took me nearly an hour to get 2 1/2 ounces and I felt like Daisy the cow while I was doing it. I thought about doing combination feeding but the expressing seemed to take ages and required lots of practice to get it right. It was then I told Stuart that I wanted to formula feed Thomas. I felt like a huge weight had been lifted off me. I went to my local NCT coffee morning and spoke to the fellow Mom’s there. Most of them had a similar story to tell. I felt a millions times better.

Thomas proved that I had made the right decision later that afternoon when I gave him my last feed of the expressed breastmilk.  After the 2 1/2 ounces he was still not full so I got another bottle of formula, expecting him to take an ounce or so. He drank another 2 1/2 ounces of formula. My breastmilk had hardly touched the sides.

The majority of the people I have met have been supportive of my decision, however a very small few have given negative comments. This experience has not put me off breastfeeding and I fully intend to try again when I have another child. All I know is that since I have stopped breastfeeding, I have been a happier mummy and Thomas has been a happy settled baby.

I would like to thank Stuart, Mandy, my NCT friends and all the rest of my family and friends for their support during my time breastfeeding and my decision to stop. It is greatly appreciated :-)

Tips for Breastfeeding

Although I only breastfed for a short time I do have some tips that may help you during the early days of breastfeeding your little one.

  1. Use Lansinoh HPA Lanolin nipple cream from the start. Your hospital breastfeeding support worker will probably say you do not need it but I would of stopped after two days without this.
  2. Breastfeeding only hurts if you are doing it wrong. It is uncomfortable but that is because your body is getting used to it. Keep at it and will stop being uncomfortable. I had just got to this stage when I decided to stop.
  3. Get yourself a comfortable supportive bra like Bravado Body Silk Seamless Nursing Bra. I highly recommend it.
  4. Ensure you have the full support of your partner before you start. I would not have got through the first two weeks without Stuart.
  5. Practice breastfeeding in public by going into supportive environments to begin with, such as your local NCT groups.
  6. Find out who your local ‘Breastfeeding Buddy’ is. They are usually in your local Children’s Centre.
  7. If you decide to stop breastfeeding and want to get rid of your milk supply quickly, drink a couple of pints of water with a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda in it. It is not pleasant but it works.

Thank you for reading this post. I hope that by sharing my experience I help others in the long run. What was your breastfeeding experience like? Did you experience anything similar? Do you have any more tips you can add to my list?

Persil Non Bio & Comfort Pure Granny Masterclass

I don’t know about you but as soon as I announced I was pregnant, knitting needles were put into action across the Midlands and beautiful baby clothes were soon being given to me. This was mostly done by my Nan and other family friends.

A very long time ago, I used to know how to knit and sew. I have not got a clue now. Well Persil Non-Bio and Comfort Pure have come to the rescue with Granny Masterclasses. These are short videos that teach you how to knit,quilt and crochet. All three videos and full instructions are below. I have not had chance to have a go myself yet but I am determined to give it ago and make something for Thomas. Have you made anything for your child? I would love to know if you have. I need inspiration! I hope you enjoy the videos :-)

Sew-ho CROCHETING

Sew-ho KNITTNG

Sew-ho QUILTING

Silent Sunday 27th November 2011

The Gallery: Something I am Proud Of

This week’s Gallery theme is ‘Something I am Proud Of’. I did not have to think hard to find a photo or an idea for this theme. It is easy. It is my partner and new father to Thomas, Stuart.

Stuart has stepped up to fatherhood in a way I never thought possible. He was fantastic during my pregnancy, looking after me, doing the housework and he did not complain too much when I turned into really grumpy pregnant lady at the end. Since Thomas has arrived he has coped tremendously well with dirty smelly nappies, night time feeds and baby sick. We have tackled this new challenge well and truly together and I would be completely lost without him. Thank you Stuart :-)

This is a post for The Gallery and the theme is ‘Something I am Proud Of’

Name Sudocrem’s new Moose!

Sudocrem have just launched their Twitter & Facebook pages for a new, mystery product expected in spring 2012 and to celebrate they are running a competition to name the mystery products mascot, the Sudocrem Moose. The winner will received £500 worth of Toys R Us vouchers and a personalised Santa sack, the winner drawn in time for Christmas!

Instructions on how to enter:
It’s simple all you have to do is ‘Like’ the new Facebook page and then enter your suggested mascot’s name. One lucky winner will be picked on the 21st December 2011 and receive their prizes shortly afterwards.
Competition Start Date– 18th November 2011
Competition Finish Date– 17th December 2011
Competition winners announced– 20th December 2011
The Prize: £500 worth of Toys R Us vouchers and a personalised, handmade Santa sack worth £150.
Competition found on; http://www.facebook.com/SudocremMousse

Many thanks to Blog Match for informing me about this competition

Silent Sunday 20th November 2011

Thomas’s Birth Story

After experiencing Braxton Hicks the previous week, when my hind waters broke at 9am on Friday 28th October 2011, it was with some relief and not a little trepidation.  At first, I thought I’d had a little accident, I ignored it but after 30 minutes I realised what had happened and phoned the hospital.  I spoke to a midwife and was asked to go into Maternity Triage to be examined.

While waiting to be examined, my fore waters went in the middle of the hospital corridor.  We were seen by a midwife who confirmed that my waters had indeed gone and unless labour started naturally, to return at 7am the next morning to be induced.

I had a couple of contractions overnight but nothing spectacular.  It was just enough to cause both my partner and I too get very little sleep that night.  By 7am the next morning we were back at the hospital, this time for the duration.

The hospital was very busy and except to be told to get on a bed in Triage, I did not get seen for the next 2.5 hours.  I was unable to have a pessary for some reason so the midwife gave me a membrane sweep and I started contractions immediately.  It was now 11am so I started walking round the hospital to get things moving. I had irregular contractions throughout the afternoon which I coped with by using a Tens machine.  By 6pm they started coming more regularly.

By now I’d been fitted with two cannulas, one for the Syntocinon to advance the labour and the other for the saline drip and the antibiotics (to prevent infection as my waters had broken over 24 hours ago).

At 7pm we were moved into one of the birthing suites, given the antibiotics and started using gas & air. Once the foetal heartbeat had been checked I was given the Syntocinon then pretty much left to it, until my temperature went through the roof.  Everyone was worried that I had picked up an infection but it turned out that someone had left the room temperature at 27 degrees.  No wonder I was hot!

My contractions intensified and I started relying on the gas & air more.  The baby was also head-butting my pelvis between contractions which was really painful.  By this time it was 10pm and I had been in active labour for 2 hours but having strong contractions for the last 11 hours.

A doctor was called in as the foetal heartbeat started dropping.  He indicated that the Syntocinon may be causing the baby stress so they turned off the drip.  The heartbeat continued to drop so a decision for an Emergency Caesarean was made.   By this time, I have to admit, I was relieved as I couldn’t take anymore.  The thought of dropping off to sleep and then when I awoke my baby would be there for me was overwhelming.

I was quite high on gas & air by this point and I could barely see the page when I signed my consent for the surgery.   As I was trying to sign the form my partner had to point out that I wasn’t actually left handed, the shocked look from the Doctor…quickly placing the pen in the right hand.  Job done, I’d be in surgery within 15 minutes.

At that moment, I had the overwhelming urge to go to the toilet and I mentioned this to the midwife.  She checked downstairs and realised that I was fully dilated.  She informed the doctor that a caesarean was no longer required and that it would be a natural delivery after all.

My plans were foiled… No chance of the easy out, I would have to push instead.

I started pushing and the midwife told me off for putting more energy into shouting than pushing down.  I got the technique soon after and the head started coming out.  What seems like ages later, but was in reality only 1 hour and 20 minutes … the head was out.

After this, everything seemed to happen really quickly and the next thing I know a baby is being placed on my chest and covered with a blanket.  All I could see is an amazing head of hair and two beautiful eyes.

‘What is it?’ I asked the midwife.

‘Dad, would you like to check?’ She replied.

He was busy staring into the baby’s eyes the same as me.  Spurred into action by the midwife he checked under the blanket.

And it was a boy!  Thomas James had been born.   I had an active delivery for my placenta which I hardly noticed and 4 stiches.  We were left doing skin to skin for an hour.  It was such an amazing, exhausting, exhilarating and tiring experience, for both of us parents!

Thomas James

Born 11.36pm on Saturday 29th October

6lbs 11 ½ ounces

Many thanks to Stuart for his support and love during my pregnancy and his help during the birth. He co-wrote the birth story with me as I forgot some bits due to being high on gas & air! :-)

Many thanks to all the staff at the maternity unit at Russell’s Hall Hospital, Dudley. You all do an amazing job!

Silent Sunday 6th November 2011

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