Becoming a mum; my journey, breastfeeding

My breastfeeding journey: 6 month update!❤

Hi lovelies,

Oh wow. Christmas is 4 days away🎄 CRAZY!!! Where has this year gone?🙊

I have been super busy & legit unable to sit down & write a post. Sad times. I was really getting back in to blogging. Anyway, since I’m able to sit down & write a post I thought I’d give you all our 6 month breastfeeding update! 🙂 My little man reached 6 months old 06.12.18 – where did those 6 months even go?😱

Not a lot has changed really. I’m still breastfeeding but we have introduced solids. We started introducing some solids just over 5 months! To be honest I did a small amount of research but all babies are different so just do what you feel is best, I just looked for advice on suitable foods for his age. Not only did we start solids but Rylie also got his first TWO TEETH. So amazing. We mainly started with veg, pureed then as he got the taste made them in to sticks so he could feed himself – this is baby led weaning! 🙂

Rylie is now 28 weeks. I do like to keep some sort of a routine with his food. For example, he usually had porridge or more recently scrambled egg. He then has whatever veg or suitable food we are having at dinner. I tend not to give him a lot of food later in the afternoon/evening as I don’t want to upset his stomach & want it all to be digested before bed. Even though Rylie has food during the day he has plenty of milk after any food & between food!

On an evening we have started to give him a bottle, to make sure he is having plenty before bed as he hasn’t been sleeping well. He still wakes every couple of hours in the night.. usually no longer than 3/4 hours! This hasn’t made much of a difference as he still wants milk frequently in the night.

If anyone has any tips on weaning I’d love to hear them!

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Top 5 Breastfeeding essentials ❤

Hi lovelies,

How are you all? Since I’ve had a lot of great response from my previous breast feeding posts I thought I would do a post about what things I found that helped make my breastfeeding journey easier & more comfortable!🙂

1. A good, comfy nursing bra. My first two were from M&S, they are really comfy but M&S themselves have a limited range or styles & sizes. Which for you ladies with larger breasts naturally it’s no good.

However, I recently found out about Neil & his nursing bra shop. I have a few different styles of bras from his website. Here are two of them.

Hot Milk Show Off, click here to view.

Bravado original, click here to view.

**Pictures taken from the website!**

I absolutely adore these bras, they make my life so much easier, one pop & I can feed my little man. They are super comfy too as these aren’t wired, despite this they’re still supportive. I highly recommend these bras if your looking for a good, sturdy & stylish nursing bra!🙂

2. Reusable Nursing pads. I found these to be so so helpful especially in the beginning when your breasts are getting used to how much your baby will need. I was forever leaking for at least the first month, these were a life saver.

I prefer these to the disposable ones as they are not only better for the environment but they’re more comfy & sit better in your bra. The disposable ones get all crumpled up in your bra!!

3. Nature Bond Silicone Pump.

At first I started off using the Tommee Tippee manual pump, it is good but when my milk was established & my boobs weren’t hard as such anymore (just feel normal!) I didn’t seem to be able to get anything from them using the manual pump.

When I switched to this I wished I’d used it sooner, it is fab. Super easy to use, you just suction it on & let it do the work. Great for if your busy, you can wear it while doing housework.

I definitely recommend it to any of you mums thinking of breastfeeding, it’s so affordable too!

4. Lasinoh Nipple Cream. I swore by this stuff, my nipples never got sore & I believe it was down to this. I applied it a couple times a day, I loved it as it is safe for baby to feed from your nipples with it on. It definitely does the job!!

5. Breastfeeding pillow. I couldn’t feed my little man without this in the beginning, these pillows are amazing! Due to having a c section it was so painful just to lift my baby, so having this pillow to hand was a lifesaver. It literally supports baby for you so you can both feed comfortably! This is essential in the beginning especially as baby does take far longer to feed as you & baby are learning.

I hope this helps any of you ladies thinking of breastfeeding!🙂 If you would like any more information on any of the products mentioned above let me know.

Check out my previous posts:

Breastfeeding journey

4 month breastfeeding update

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Becoming a mum; my journey, breastfeeding

Breastfeeding journey: 4 months!♡

Hi beauties,

Wow. Exactly four months of breastfeeding, firstly where has the time gone? It doesn’t seem like four days let alone four months!! So crazy.

Since I had a lot of interest from my previous breastfeeding post I thought I would do an update! Breastfeeding feels like a way of life now, it’s such a normal part of our routine, it seems like we’ve always done it. I have been so so lucky, well to be honest, like I said in the previous post, research before starting to breastfeed really is key. If you haven’t read my previous post I’ll link it here so you can read that too🙂 But yes, I have been so lucky to be able to feed my baby for this long, my goal is at least 6 months & anything after that is just a bonus.

Now that my milk is established & we are in as much of a routine as I think you can be in when you have a four month old (whether you breastfeed or not) I thought it’s the perfect time to update you all. I also asked on my Facebook profile if anyone had any other questions they wanted me to answer so I’ll try touch on them here but some things I got asked to cover will be a seperate post.

Anyway, let’s get stuck in to the update. Rylie is exactly four months today, when he was last weighed two weeks ago he weighed a healthy 14Ibs 1oz & measured 66cm. It’s safe to say he is definitely growing & mummies milk is providing everything he needs to do so. I feel such a sense of achievement every single day being able to provide him with the best nutrients & antibodies for my baby to thrive. Would you like to see a post about the benefits of breastfeeding for mum & baby? Let me know below please!❤

Rylie is feeding every 2.5/3hours! In about the second month he seemed to be sleeping through, often he would go from 11pm til 5/6am, I thought GREAT he’s already sleeping through, WOW!

Although this is not so much the case any more, he isn’t bad through the night, he’s still bloody brilliant. He still doesn’t wake alot in the night! How lucky am I?🙂 Usually he’ll be asleep from say 7/8pm, wake up around 11pm for a feed which we have always done as I like to feed him as late as I can so he sleeps through the night better. He then usually goes til about 3/4am before he wants another feed. Then when he wakes up next it’s usually time to be up anyway so it works out well.

The odd night recently he has been a bit unsettled & he’s been up every couple of hours, but as long as he is ok it really doesn’t bother me.

According to The Wonder Weeks app though the fourth leap is a big one. If you’ve not heard of it The Wonder Weeks app keeps track of when your baby is likely to go through another “leap” in their development & at what she this happens. I’ve found it pretty helpful as it explains simply but very well what exactly your baby will learn that week.

Of course it’s just a generalised thing worked out on when your baby was born & is probably based on an average of so many babies so don’t get too caught up on it. It’s definitely worth getting so you can keep an eye on your babies leaps and development though as this is apparently when babies can be more unsettled.

Summary of this week’s developments for Rylie on the wonder weeks app!

I was asked if I thought my supply had increased since he’s obviously growing. I think it must have as Rylie is definitely getting enough to nourish him. The more your baby takes the more your body is going to replace it I guess, like when we express, it is supposed to help up the supply as your boobs are being drained so they refill ready for the next feed.

Night feeds

When I made it clear I wanted to breastfeed a lot of people said, but you’ll have to do the night feeds. Yes, yes I will. Lets be honest, yes they’re tiring but they don’t last forever. To be honest, it doesn’t bother me, I love waking up to feed him! Anyway, if you don’t want to get up & do night feeds, why have a baby?

Rylie is obviously comforted by me as well, so more times than not he just goes straight back to sleep. We have a chicco next to me crib so I don’t even have to move anywhere. It’s great. I couldn’t imagine having to get up in the middle of the night with a screaming baby, rushing downstairs and having to sterilise & faff with formula. That’s my personal opinion, of course as long as baby is fed, happy & healthy that’s the main. Of course you could express if your partner wants to get up with baby. Since my fiance works I don’t expect him to be getting up in the night, he needs his rest!

Feeling like your doing it alone?

It was actually my fiance that brought this up to include in this blog post. I’m sure you ladies that breastfeed know what I’m talking about, it can seem like you’re doing it alone sometimes. Especially in the beginning when you & baby are adjusting to the way of life & getting used to how to feed. It can be lonely, but until he’d pointed it out I’d not really thought about it. Although you are doing it by yourself, just having the support around you means everything. It really helps, especially like I said, in the beginning when your all unsure.

If you are struggling & don’t have the support, there’s plenty of groups nationwide whether online or locally to you that will help. Check out your local children’s centre, I’ve found it so nice just going to groups & meeting others.

I’ve loved being a part of this breastfeeding group on Facebook too. Click here to check it out.

Otherwise, I’m always here. It’s my mission to help others along their journey, not only breastfeeding but life in general.

Expressing

I started to express when Rylie was a few weeks old as I knew I was going to leave him as I had a hen party to go to. I expressed a bit before the event as I wanted to make sure he was actually going to take the bottle. Which after a bit of persuasion by Matt he did, still reluctantly take a the bottle now. The health visitor advised not to bottle feed til about 6 weeks in case he prefers it, but I didn’t have a choice & couldn’t wait that long that’s why we trialled it before the main event as I didn’t want to go out & find that he wouldn’t take the bottle whatsoever.

Even to this day he doesn’t often have from the bottle as my partner does work a lot anyway so haven’t expressed for a bit – other than the odd time as I’ve had to leave him with family while at the dentist (I’m aware I could take him, but it makes life easier to go to the dentist by myself!)

In the beginning I adored using the Tommee Tippee manual pump but now I absolutely love my nature bond silicone pump (link below to where you can buy it!), it makes life so much easier as I just suction it on while I’m feeding Rylie so it can catch any milk that’s leaking from the other side. I also use it when I’m not feeding Rylie, in between feeds, when I know I need milk for if I have to leave him (which has only been a handful of times!) & I do express so my partner can feed him too.

I’m planning on expressing more & freezing it so my partner can use it when he wants & when we start to wean him I can use my milk for things like porridge.

How long does expressed milk last?

❤At room temperature breast milk can last up to 6 hours. But best to use it as soon as possible if not able to refrigerate.

❤In an iced cooler it can last a day.

❤In the back of the fridge it can last 5 days. But it’s best to use within 3 or freeze it.

❤In the freezer lasts up to 6 months.

Bare in mind with any of these. If you add freshly expressed milk to any of these ways of storing, you have to make sure they’re the same temperature. For example, if I already have expressed milk in fridge & I’ve expressed more; I always put the freshly expressed in to the fridge (either in a seperate bottle or leave it in my nature bond pump) so it can cool, once it’s been in there a few hours I’ll add it to the other lot of milk I’ve already expressed.

Also note, if you are adding breast milk to each other say you expressed yesterday & added today’s in to the same bottle, you’d only be able to keep the milk 4 days as yesterday’s milk has been in a day already.

I think I’m going to leave it there & do seperate blog posts on other topics there are to cover. Let me know below if there’s anything in particular❤

❤Nature bond silicone pump, click here

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Breastfeeding journey in pictures, so far!!♡

Something so natural & amazing needs to be celebrated 😁😍 a few of us over Rylies life so far!! Nearly 9 weeks of breast feeding 🙌 it hasn’t been easy at times but so worth it! 💖

Everyone said how hard breastfeeding was going to be & I almost felt like people were doubting me before we’d even begun.. but I stood my ground & we have come so far! After being told I was going to struggle I did so much research, yes you can research BF there are videos & articles that help you get “the perfect latch” (or at least learn what it looks like)👏🏼
I urge anyone wanting to breastfeed to research about it… my post below lists some videos I used that I found super helpful 🙂💖

I don’t want to make anyone feel bad or anything for whatever reason… breast or bottle it’s everyone’s individual decision I’m just super proud and happy of our journey so I’m going to share it 😃💖

https://makeupbynat.wordpress.com/2018/06/28/breastfeeding-our-first-week%e2%9d%a4/

#WBW2018 #worldbreastfeedingweek

Becoming a mum; my journey, breastfeeding

Breastfeeding; our first week!!❤

Hi lovelies 🙂

So many people reached out to me about my labour story it was lovely to hear from you all! So I thought I would share more of my journey, something I particularly feel passionate about. Breastfeeding!🙂

Plus, it is actually National breastfeeding week in the UK this week – 25-29th June! YAAAAY!❤

Whether a new mum decides to breast or bottle feed their child that is totally their decision, everyone is different & everyone is entitled to their own choices! This is my decision & I want to share my experiences to help others!❤

I’ve always known I wanted to breastfeed my little one so when he came along it was a no brainer! Luckily I’m able to breastfeed my little man but I know others can’t which is unfortunate, so when he was born within the first few hours (not sure on timings at this point, I was out of it with all the drugs that were in my system!) I was told to give him a feed. As a first time mum many things went through my head. What if I can’t do it? What if I’m not doing it right? How do I know if he’s getting enough? Thousands of things went through my brain but when the time comes you just seem to do it. I seemed to gain this new, scary yet exciting skill out of nowhere.. like I’d somehow done it before but knew I definitely hadn’t!!

The midwife literally left me to my own devices, I’m sure she would have helped a bit more if I had asked but I just sort of did it! He seemed to latch on well of course after many attempts as we were both newbies to it all… when I thought I had a good latch & the midwife came round I asked if it looked right & she was happy with how he was feeding.

This picture was taken hours after he was born, can definitely tell I was tired!

Colostrum & the very early days.

Being a first time mum & having little to no experience with breast feeding I swear it helped me a million times over to research about breastfeeding. While I was pregnant I would watch videos & read articles on how to get the perfect latch & take note of what the “perfect latch” looked like. I swear if I hadn’t of done this I wouldn’t have a clue, just hearing other people’s experiences & tips on breastfeeding really helped!🙂 I’ll link some of my favourite videos below❤

The first few days of breastfeeding are quite strange as you’re producing colostrum, not actual milk yet.

Colostrum is what is produced before your breast milk really comes in, it is yellow/golden in colour & is very rich & nutritious for your little one. Your colostrum provides your little one with lots of vitamins, minerals, fats, protein, carbohydrates & antibodies that help fight off any bacteria/viruses that can cause disease! Many say even if your baby just gets some of your colostrum it gives them a good kick start to life!

Your breasts don’t exactly feel full or much different to while being pregnant so I was worried he wasn’t even getting anything. We soon learnt this wasn’t the case, he would feed pretty well, newborns tend to feed anywhere between 5 & 30 minutes, even though they only have a tiny stomach – about the size of a marble – it obviously takes them (and you) time to get used to feeding so even though they don’t need alot it takes time!🙂 After his feeds on about day 2 he started spitting up a bit which I got worried about. The midwives reassured me all was fine & that in fact it was good as at least we knew he was getting plenty of the colostrum as what he spat up was golden in colour. The midwives said babies tend to spit up with the colostrum being so rich.

Another way to tell your baby is getting enough is through wet & dirty nappies. Your baby should be doing plenty of wet nappies in a day & a few poos! If your concerned contact your health visitor or midwife.

Little man was born on Wednesday 6th June at 23:23, the first 3 days we were in hospital with me having a c section & we were both being monitored (that’s for a different post, planning on doing a more in depth post about my c section!). It was actually nice to be in the hospital, everyone on the labour ward were lovely & so helpful. It was so reassuring to know they were just a buzzer away if I was concerned at all with his feeding or needed help establishing a latch.

However, me being me I just seemed to get on with it & when midwives popped in I would get them to have a look at his latch & see if they thought all was fine which 90% of the time they were happy.. the first few times we adjusted his latch but that’s easy peasy; always make sure to break the suction seal before taking your little one of your boob by popping your little finger at the side of their mouth otherwise it is very painful!

Love this image, gives you a good overview of how & why breast feeding is so beneficial!!

Day 3 & our hardest night to date!

We didn’t get home while about 8pm on Saturday evening so by this point we were so ready to be home & knackered from everything that we had gone through! You always feel instantly better when your home, or so I thought! I did love being back home but it was weird, I’d got used to the confines of the one room where me & Rylie were by ourselves. As much as I wanted to be home I felt so nervous & anxious. At the hospital I had midwives next door to rush in if we needed help! This was not the case anymore & this made me anxious.

Not only that my boobs where so so heavy, I wasn’t sure what was happening as at first with colostrum your boobs don’t exactly feel full! It felt so weird to me they were like rocks, after I stopped & actually thought about it I realised ‘wait, is my milk coming in!?’ I had a quick Google & it seemed that this was what was happening. I say this was the worst night cos we were up most of the night, probably got an hour, two at the most, sleep due to the fact my boobs where so hard & heavy Rylie was struggling to latch which was a knock on effect as he then couldn’t feed properly. When you haven’t slept much for the last week either it definitely gets to you.. I had a bit of a melt down to say the least! I didn’t know what to do for the best… it was all new to me, I was still feeling very ‘foggy’ & dazed like you do after having a baby (don’t think this goes for a few months! Haha!) So I wasn’t thinking straight, which was made worse with my little man screaming & crying cos he wasn’t able to feed right! My partner didn’t know how to help me for the best as his previous two children had been bottle fed so breastfeeding was new to him too! He comforted me & told me everything would be fine & that I was doing so good with him.. why did I feel this wasn’t true? After a cry I almost felt better.. sometimes you just need to let it all go & that is fine, never be afraid to cry & let your emotions out! That’s far better than keeping it all inside. I have learnt this the hard way over the years I’ve had a lot of crap thrown at me & I’d always hide my true feelings.

Once I’d had my break down it seemed to clear my head a little, I expressed a small amount of milk, this helped my milk to come in & Rylie was able to get a better latch to feed! I was so relieved but felt silly as well for getting so anxious & worked up as this doesn’t help the milk. Now I realise it is only normal for me to feel this way & at the end of the day he is my first so it’s all trial & error for the first couple of weeks really! After this night though everything seems to be running smoothly. Once your milk has come in it almost seems easier as you can tell when he’s fed well as your breasts feel lighter & relieved! Haha! Usually after a few hours they get hard again when I know he’s ready for another feed.

Although your milk comes in, usually after about 5 days after birth but can be before, your milk doesn’t get fully established for a couple more weeks! These coming 2 weeks or so your body is deciding how much it will need to make to be able to feed your baby. This is the time where my washable breast pads have come in handy as they leak like mad. Usually while I’m feeding on one side the other will leak! (link will be below where I got my breast pads!)

Breastfeeding positions

I have linked a video showing different positions you can hold your little one in to make it comfier for you while feeding.

This is one part of breastfeeding I think I over thought way too much, I started by trying to feed him in the rugby/football hold, this just didn’t work for me, after having a caesarean I found this hold very uncomfortable & difficult as it felt like I was straining myself (I didn’t exactly have the lightest of babies!). Once I simplified it & just used the traditional cross cradle hold I found feeding far comfier & enjoyable. I wasn’t getting myself worked up cos I was hurting & he seemed happy & feeding well in this position so we have stayed with this position from then on! Always make sure you are well supported & comfy before positioning your baby onto your breast & lastly RELAX!!

❤RELAXING IS KEY TO SUCCESSFUL BREASTFEEDING!❤

These cushions are a gods send too… make life so much easier! Once you are in a comfy position just pop it under to support your little one & your arm! I tend to have it more at the side I’m feeding so the highest part of the cushion is well supporting my arm!

Don’t forget, while feeding your little one can be feeding for a good half an hour if not longer! My little man seems to feed for at least half an hour but then sleep for 3/4 hours which is amazing for his age & especially since they don’t really establish a routine yet!🙂 – post to follow when milk & routine is established!

I hope you enjoyed this post, rather a long one, but hopefully it will help you! Definitely check out the videos below & defintiely do your own research, it will help so so much!! I’m by no means an expert, heck, I’ve only been doing it a little over 3 weeks!

Thank you for reading & let me know if you’d like more breastfeeding updates.. I’ll definitely be doing a post when my milk has fully established🙂

Reusable & washable breast pads

My favourite breastfeeding videos

Emily Norris – Breastfeeding Tips & Essentials

Cloud Mom – Breastfeeding positions for newborns

Susan Yara- Breastfeeding tips & what I’ve learnt

Feeding Position & Latch

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