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Like all others, as a first-time mother, there were a myriad of questions and inhibitions in my mind about my yet-to-arrive baby, feeding patterns, late-night sittings, diaper woes, sleepless nights, health and what not! But, once the baby was handed over to me, something miraculous happened and an unknown motherly feeling engulfed me which I never knew existed inside of me and I could instantly relate to the saying – “The moment a child is born the mother is also born.” My heart was already attached to hers and her touch already melted me to the core.
As my daughter was born earlier than expected via C-section, I had to face a lot of challenges in latching her because of a low breastmilk supply. That broke my heart! I could not see her crying of hunger therefore shifted her to formula milk, but alongside kept latching her and used a breast pump. In the beginning, it used to take hours to pump out a few millimetres of milk and when I got tired, my partner used to help. I took a nutrient-rich diet as per the requirement and suggested by the doctors, tried different positions to feed
her, took her to a separate room to feed, held her in my lap frequently and did everything else which I could. And because of all these efforts and continuous support from my partner, I was able to feed her for up to six months. Then we shifted her to formula feed and continued giving her the same till the age of two years as still, we were not sure about any other kind of milk (cow or buffalo).
We did not miss any recommended vaccinations and visited the paediatrician regularly to check her overall growth and development. Today, she is a six-year-old healthy, grown-up child with all the quick and witty replies.
After going through the whole new challenge of breastfeeding the baby without compromising either of our health, the following are the takeaways I want to share with all new breastfeeding mothers who may or may not face similar circumstances –
- Include foods that will boost breastmilk production like fenugreek, cumin, carom seeds, almonds, garlic, fennel seeds, cinnamon, milk, etc.
- Avoid alcohol, too many caffeinated drinks, chocolate, spicy and gas-causing foods.
- Wear comfortable clothing and use the right kind of nursing bra.
- Use less of a breast pump and latch baby frequently as supply depends on the demand.
- Do not stress and remain happy with good thoughts.
- Breastfeed from both sides.
- Take help from your partner and do not feel pressured.
- Find a comfortable place to feed and keep everything needed handy while breastfeeding.
- Eat well with plenty of fluids.
- Do not hesitate to share your thoughts with your partner and family to get emotional support.
Though there is no substitute for mother’s milk, at the same time, if it is not produced sufficiently, due to medical or any other reason, do not feel dejected and lose hope. After delivery, the mother already has to go through a lot, emotionally
and physically, and contemplating on uncontrolled situation/s will affect not just both of you, but everyone around. Motherhood is an exquisite feeling, so admire and savour every little moment with your child.
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