Expressing The Boobs Whilst Breastfeeding

 

I still can’t believe that I am successfully breastfeeding Baby George. The boobs are doing a great job and I am so proud. Which is surprising, as I spend a lot of my day (and night) doing it, but it still hasn’t quite sunk in yet for some reason. After trying and failing… Sorry, no, that’s not good terminology is it? After ‘not being successful’ (bit better) with breastfeeding our eldest, Teddy, I was gutted about having to stop due to him suffering really badly with Reflux (G.E.R.D) . Therefore, I was subsequently prepared for it all to go wrong with George.

 

Well, it hasn’t. He has been exclusively breastfed from birth and loves it. And I do too.  But, there is one thing that I find so tedious.

 

Boob Expressing with Medela Breast Pump

 

Expressing breast milk.

 

I have to express. If I want to go out of the house without George by my side, I have to make sure there is enough boob milk left behind to tide him over. Going out to catch up with a friend? Out comes the breast pump. Going to the shops to try on jeans and play with makeup? Go for it! But remember the breast pump. Dipping your toe back into work a bit? Well done. But did you get the breast pump?

 

Pump The Boob!

 

I have the Medela Breast Pump . I bought it from the maternity ward after we had Teddy and this felt like a no brainer choice because Medela was the brand the ward were using and what’s good for them would be good for me! I am usually the type of person to read up on reviews and write ups if I’m making a purchase, but I just knew this one was good.

 

My choice was the right one and it has been amazing! It’s a brilliant pump, small and compact with a great amount of suction as well as a choice of settings and speeds to simulate the sucking reflex on the nipple to encourage better milk flow.*

 

* If you have only read the above paragraph and think this is an erotica post, then you have got the wrong place and have my sincerest apologies for misleading you!

 

I would be lost without this pump though. My boobs would be like rocks, my milk supply would have definitely dwindled in the beginning and I would be incapable of having any time away from George. Sounds harsh, but sometimes you do need that space.

 

But I Really Hate Expressing!

 

For one thing, it’s so fiddly! Getting it positioned to just the right place so that the nipple gets pulled into the nozzle thingy (I know, excelling at technical jargon here) and getting comfortable whilst not compromising the equipment, is just so difficult to do!

 

And it’s boring. You sit there, milking yourself, watching the milk come out with a little bit of anxiety tinging the pride because you need to get as much as you can or else all hell shall break loose!

 

Nine times out of ten, I am also nursing George on one boob whilst expressing from the other. It’s a good time to do it as having him nurse from me triggers all the hormones and helps my milk ‘let down’ happen at it’s fullest capacity. But it’s a bad time because George tends to get angry at the pump (presumably he sees it as stealing his precious milk) and he also likes to play with the tube that attaches the pump to the nozzle and bottle so there have been a couple of times where I have ended up ‘disconnected’ and soaked through.

 

It’s also no easy feat producing enough milk to feed the baby in the present whilst providing for more for him in the future. I am not a cow (in the literal term at least) and I do not have taps for nipples. I have to produce this baby nectar and that takes time, energy and patience. The key behind it has been very similar to Peter Pan’s advice to Wendy on how to fly: ‘Think Happy Thoughts’. Sounds so easy but if you are sleep deprived, sitting in a messy hole that used to be your house and witnessing your toddler trying to feed your 5 month old a hula hoop, it’s difficult not to let the negativity take over. Or the incredulity that comes from everyone thinking that you are some sort of vending machine…

 

Expressing Enough Is So Difficult

 

There have been many times PB has looked at my little 50ML stash in the fridge and said ‘Is that all you got?’ or he will turn to me and say with trepidation, ‘You need to get expressing… Have we got enough for when you go to so and so?.’ Panic is the theme behind these enquiries. Because he knows that, without my milk, his time with George is not going to be pleasant. My milk is basically the glue that holds everything together.

 

Which is a huge compliment but also a massive amount of responsibility! And now that I am looking to get back into work again (gradually, no running before walking for me this time!), I am so aware that I have to be on the ball with pumping and storing my milk.

 

So, out come the carbs, into the socket goes the pump cable and soon enough the rhythmic ‘Muh, moo, muh, moo, muh moo’** sounds shall be filling the house even more than ever so that I am not too missed during my absence.

 

Or rather, so that my boobs are not too missed. Obviously.

 

** How ironic that a breast pump sounds like a cow. Coincidental and somewhat ironic methinks.

 

 



Burnished Chaos

Parenthood is massive isn’t it? From the day you decide that you want to have children or, for some, from the moment that test turns positive, it takes up so much of your life. It becomes your life. I have been a Mum since conceiving our first baby, Teddy, in 2014. I started my blog then to document everything on this journey of motherhood and also as a way to vent off the never ending, all encompassing thoughts that have gone with it.

So many thoughts. So many experiences and feelings. It is a subject of varying opinions and approaches. A topic of overwhelming proportion. The sheer expanse of it, the fact it is forever and the responsibility of it all is unlike any other journey life can bring.

You can sometimes feel alone. Like you are the only one feeling what you are feeling. And then comes the comparisons. There are thousands of baby books lining the shelves, hundreds of blog posts detailing experiences and perspectives, not to mention the real life conversations with fellow parents, both old and new, all documenting how you should parent, how you can parent… it leaves the mind reeling sometimes!

When the people at My Baby Way contacted me, I was in the throes of adjusting to life with two little ones. I was trudging through the depths of PND and feeling very lonely. They sent me a link to their Facebook Page and, during a particularly lengthy night feed where I needed something to focus on in order to ward off slumber, I clicked on and discovered a whole host of helpful and informative videos.

My Baby Way is a web series, focusing on parents just like ourselves, documenting their journeys and addressing a whole range of thoughts, feelings and experiences that happen along the way. They capture the essence of what it is like to learn to be a parent. And it is so interesting and relatable, I have found myself binge watching them on a regular basis!

Take breastfeeding for example. There’s a couple, Ali and Joe, who I really found myself associating my own experiences with, and in one of the episodes, Ali describes what it is like to feel like life is just one non-stop breastfeeding session. Seeing this fellow mother, tired and hair scraped back with that all too familiar look, of ‘Wow, this is exhausting’ plastered all over her face, was such a comfort to me! “THERE!” I said to myself, “There, right there is exactly how I am feeling. And looking! Thank God I’m not the only one.”

New Mother Ali talks about her experiences with breastfeeding…

Of course, you know when you’re in it that you aren’t the only one. You know someone out there is feeling it too. But actually seeing that person. It just made all the difference. Validation that you are not alone on the island. Your very own Wilson! (Brownie points for getting that reference!).

Getting a social life back was another episode’s topic with these two. That feeling that you are getting your life back, finding time to see people and piece in socialising around having a new baby. Ali, and her other half Joe, speak about the benefits of having fellow parents to socialise with and address how it helps maintain your sanity. Which it does. No one benefits from being in at home all day. As Ali says, ‘If you’re out then you look forward to getting home. If you’re home all day you’re just there and itching to get out.’

I could go on forever about episodes that I found interesting! We have recently been co-sleeping with Baby George, a whole new concept for us that we are still umming and ahhing about a lot in relation to whether or not it shall be a long term thing. A sweet couple, Erica and Nicholas, speak about their choice not to co-sleep with their little one in one episode and, hearing their fears about suffocation and creating a baby who becomes too attached, it made me realise that there are still a lot of doubts in my mind and that these were all perspectives and fears that I am still contemplating myself. It was nice to compare our views on things like this, not out of judgement or competition, but genuinely out of a mutual concern for what is the right thing to do for baby and ourselves.

Sweet couple, Erica and Nicholas, were so easy to relate to and got me thinking about the effects of co sleeping…

Like I say, there are a whole load of videos and couples to watch and take interest in. Not to mention a lot of cuteness wrapped up in their little bundles of pride and joy to coo over. I have been binge watching the episodes during nap times, snack times, meal times… on the loo… Anywhere and anytime I have had a spare minute, I have tuned in to see more from what they all have to share. Especially on the days where I am run ragged and feeling like everyone else has got ‘it’ together… whatever ‘it’ actually is?!

All these little snippets showing thoughts and feelings that are SO akin to my own have just been heart warmingly reassuring and unbelievably comforting. A web series forum that encourages us all to find our own Baby Way, and that’s passionate about sharing and encouraging the stories of people whom are transitioning into parenthood, without any dictation, finger-pointing and judgement. Hurrah! That’s what I say!

 

Discover more about ‘My Baby Way’ for yourself via their Facebook Page,TwitterInstagramYoutube and Pinterest

This was a Sponsored post, however all opinions are my own. 

Motherhood The Real Deal



A Blogging Good Time

 

3 Little Buttons

Burnished Chaos

What Have We Been Up To This Week?

 

This week we have noticed so many changes. When Teddy was 5 months old, he was very much still laying down in one place. He was happy to watch us all walk about the room and if we gave him a toy to play with he would hold it carefully in his hands and inspect every little bit of it with intense focus, complete with a determined frown.

 

George, at 5 months, is moving about at every waking moment, launching himself off of people’s laps and rolling across the room at the speed of light. Slight exaggeration of course, but certainly at a fair speed seeing as he manages it in the same amount of time as it takes me to pop to the kitchen to put the kettle on.

 

I try not to compare the two of them but it is really hard not to! You refer back to your first time round for guidance through varying degrees of development and when the two don’t align then it is really noticeable. Not surprisingly, I mean, they are two completely different individuals, even if they do come from the same source.

 

Baby George and Teddy on the swings this week

 

As well as chasing a rolling super baby around the room, we have actually had a pretty action packed week. Visits to grandparents houses, an animal park and a Fire Station’s open day were all top of the list. Am quite proud of myself for having so much planned and getting out of the house intact and ready for adventure. No easy feat with two young ones and all that goes with them! It is so sweet every time we leave the house because Teddy gets super excited and declares ‘We…gon…on…a… adventcher!’.

 

Toddler Teddy enjoying his balloon this week

 

Have enjoyed using my new car for these adventures, and love the fact that it is so much bigger than my old one! No more fitting everything in like I am figuring out a Rubix Cube puzzle and no more stooping down and breaking my back when strapping the boys into their seats. It has a massive boot too, so I can just load the buggy up with room to spare and not have to sit on the back door to get it to close. Am constantly fearing it will conk out as I get so paranoid buying cars second-hand but, so far, so good.*

 

*hugs every wooden surface in the house for good fortune to continue*.

 

Teddy has been developing his speech even more and coming out with full sentences and interacting more and more coherently everyday. Upon saying good morning to him the other day, I was pulling the blind up at his window with my back facing him, and all of a sudden, his little voice said ‘Morning Mimmy, how are you?’. I have never been so overjoyed to hear someone enquire after me. But I played it cool and said ‘I’m well thank you darling, how are you?’. Best conversation I have ever had!

 

Additional Findings and Information From This Week:

 

  • ‘Mimmy’ is not a typo. I am ‘Mimmy’. ‘Mummy’ is obviously not the correct label for me in Teddy’s view. We just have to be different I guess.
  • We went to an animal park and met a load of meerkats. They were brilliant and so full of character! And I learnt that a group of them are referred to as a ‘mob’?! Made me laugh to myself, they look quite gangster like with their dark little faces and jittery appearance, as if they are on a lookout for a police raid! 
  • Spider watch is still ongoing in the house and almost every day I have been having unwanted encounters with one arachnid or another. They really need to keep their distance from me. If I have shoes on or am hoovering, it turns into a ‘every man for himself’ situation!
  • Just because you take your kids to something that they should enjoy, doesn’t mean that they actually will enjoy it. Toddlers especially. Sometimes things are too much fun and that means they get overwhelmed and tired easily which means that they actually spend most of the time crying and having to have time outs. Which is exactly what they do when they are bored too. Seriously, you can’t win sometimes. But it’s the taking part that counts right? 

 

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