Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Breastfeeding For Dummies...Errr, New Moms.

Last Wednesday we went to our first "baby" class, this one was all about breastfeeding. I'm really anxious and probably putting way too much pressure on myself to be a "good," breastfeeding mom. I've read a lot of really wonderful and encouraging words on the internet, but a lot of people I know, have struggled or steered away from breastfeeding. To know someone who breastfed/feeds that could  cheer me on or be there to talk to in general, would be wonderful. Since I don't have that, I will continue reading online, going to classes and visiting with lactation consultants. At this point I am determined to breastfeed and I will work hard to obtain all the knowledge I can prior to baby boy arriving. After that it's up to me and him, and I have full confidence in us. :)
For anyone who is pregnant or a breastfeeding dummie, like me, here are a few things I learned about breastfeeding. Again, I knew nothing about breastfeeding beforehand, so some of these might seem obvious-but, ahem, **no baby experience, whatsoever!!**
Check this out...This sweet little guy was our practice baby. I am 100% convinced that this doll was no coincidence. He was left in the box just for us. Hehe. :)

Signs of Hunger:
  • Baby bringing hands to the mouth
  • Lip smacking
  • Looking a bit like a baby bird
  • Grimacing
  • Crying of course, but this is a late sign of hunger
Signs That Baby is Getting Enough Breast Milk:
  • 6-8 diapers of soft stool within 24 hours
  • The "suck, suck, swallow motion" during feedings
  • Peeing 6 times within 24 hours
  • Baby will typically pop off on their own when full
General Facts That I Didn't Know:
  • You will feed 8-12 times within 24 hours
  • These feedings will not be evenly spaced
  • You want to watch your baby, not the clock for when to feed
  • You can't overfeed
  • A baby should double weight in the first 6 months
  • You don't want to go more than 4 hours without a feeding. At 4 hours you will want to wake your baby to feed.
  • When breastfeeding you don't want to swaddle, you want to be able to read their hunger signals.
  • Baby should have a fresh diaper before feedings
  • If baby is making a smacking noise, they're most likely not latched correctly
  • Avoid bottles and pacifiers for the first 4-5 weeks
  • When/if you do begin bottle feeding, you want a slow flow nipple and you want the baby to sit upright
  • Babies burp less when they're breastfed
  • You need plenty of water when breastfeeding
  • Remember that crazy dream I had about milking myself? WELL, you totally can milke yourself! It's call "Hand Expression", or "Manual Expression"

For me, this was all very interesting. I wasn't bored at any point during our class. I was a sponge, soaking up everything that I could. It felt "cool" to think about all that I'll be giving my baby just by breastfeeding him. It's going to take some practice and dedication, but I'm looking forward to it.
Melissa Loren


  1. Great info! You are certainly preparing well, dear. You should pick up a copy of The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding." Not only does it give you practical tips & how-tos, it really gets you inside the mindset of a breastfeeding mother! Don't forget that breastfeeding isn't just for food. Breastfeeding is bonding, nurturing, comfort, and all the other things... I honestly believe Ingrid was such a happy babe because I breastfed her whenever and wherever she wanted to. :) You're going to do GREAT!

  2. I love this! You remind me of how I was and how I felt when I was expecting my first. I had no one around me that really helped much because most of them did not breastfeed. Living on Love gave you great advice as far as reading "The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding." You sound like you will have a plethora of info though because you also read online. I also joined a local La Leche League group (even while pregnant you can join) in order to get support and help from other breastfeeding moms. The leaders volunteer and are on call to talk to you whenever you have questions outside of the meetings that they have once a month! :) It doesn't cost to attend the meetings or get support. If you want to be a member, you pay like $40 for the entire year and the money just goes towards the local group to help them with any fees or books they want to keep on hand for moms to read. I think you are going to do great! You can check out my blog if you want. I wrote a post about things I wish I could tell women about breastfeeding.


  3. You'll do great! Especially because you are preparing yourself so well.
    When I was pregnant with Liam I had no idea about breastfeeding! I'll admit we had a really tough beginning but we persevered and breastfed for 14 months. Woo-hoo! With my second I chose to stop breastfeeding after a week (I continued to pump for a little while but soon switched to formula). I tell you that only to tell you that you shouldn't feel like a failure either way. You're going to be a great mom and you can make the best decision for your family. Good luck with breastfeeding!

  4. I third the womanly art of breastfeeding! And don't over think it. It's so instinctive! Also, ignore the negative comments from any family and friends who may not understand. Breastfeeding is incredible and one thing that I'm so glad I was persistent about. Our babies were made to be breastfed, plain and simple. Get it, girl! From a first time mama, going 10 months strong. :)

    Jenn (@jennifmartin, Instagram)


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