My first week
I’m tired after the long labour and so is Mia, but it’s amazing that after nine months of carrying her we’re now having cuddles. It’s great to feel her skin against mine. She has only woken briefly a few times and I put her to the breast with the help of the Midwife Jan. Mia sucked for a couple of minutes and then went back to sleep. Jan reassured me this was normal and to just feed when the baby wakes. Adam’s been really great and he’s changed Mia’s first nappy – I really laughed as it was the black, sticky poo (meconium) that all babies pass when they’re newborn. She has only had one wee today, but the Midwife has said that this is completely normal for the first day.
We came home today – it feels a bit scary without the midwife on hand but Jan has reassured me that my positioning and attachment are fine, which is important for us both. Mia is still pretty sleepy and Adam and I can’t stop staring at her – she’s beautiful. I’ve got the number for the midwifery team if we need anything before the Midwife visits tomorrow. We have had lots of skin to skin cuddles today which Jan says is important for my milk production.
I feel a bit weepy today, but Jan had warned me that I would feel like this and it is down to changes in my hormones and has nothing to do with breastfeeding and happens to all new mums. My milk came in this morning, I found it a bit difficult to get Mia to latch on and my mum suggested me using a bottle instead, but once the midwife came and went over hand expression like I’d been shown in hospital it made it much easier. She seems to be feeding constantly today which is great as it has helped my breasts feel less tender. Mia is ‘pooing’ and ‘weeing’ more today and her poos are changing to a greeny-brown colour.
Mia is feeding lots again today and we both seem to be getting the hang of it. I’m quite tired but Adam has been brilliant and made me lots of little snacks and drinks to keep me going. He has sat with me during her feeds and is really proud of me for breastfeeding.
I’m still tired but I’m really getting to know when Mia is hungry or just wants a cuddle. She is now ‘pooing’ and ‘weeing’ more but Jan says that is perfectly normal and shows that my milk supply is great. Mia’s poos have now turned to a yellow colour.
Mia was weighed yesterday by the Midwife and has lost some weight since her birth. This really worried me, but Jan has reassured me that this is normal. My mum popped in before with our laundry all washed and ironed – it’s amazing how much washing one tiny baby can make. Adam’s mum has made us a Shepherd’s pie for tea – our favourite! It’s great that everyone is helping make Mia’s first days much easier.
Before a feed my boobs are feeling full but aren’t painful and i’m feeling more confident. The night feeds are going fine, it’s tiring but I’m managing to sleep well in between feeds probably due to the fact that I can feed her in bed and then just put her back in her ‘Moses’ basket next to my bed. The Midwife has suggested that I rest when Mia is sleeping during the day.
Mia was weighed today and has regained her birth weight and I’m really pleased that breastfeeding is going so well. Laura called out today to see us, she is the Breastfeeding Peer Support Worker who works closely with the Midwife and Health Visitor. Laura spent time just chatting and reassuring me how well I was doing. She’s suggested I go to one of the local support groups as soon as I feel up to getting out and about and left me a leaflet with all the times and places. There’s one group just a five minute walk away and another is right by my mum’s house so either of those would be good.
2 Weeks old
A major milestone reached today – I did my first breastfeed whilst I was out and about! I got some tips and advice at the Breastfeeding Workshop I attended during my pregnancy. I felt confident that I could manage to feed discreetly and lo and behold no-one batted an eyelid, in fact, I don’t think anyone even noticed I was feeding. It was such a confidence boost as it was one of my biggest worries. It felt great to get out for lunch with my friend and catch up on all the news from work without having to worry about preparing a feed whilst I was out. I met my Health Visitor Sue and she congratulated me on how well Mia and I were doing and invited me to the baby health club at my local children’s centre.
4 Weeks old
I went along to the breastfeeding support group again today; there were another five mums with their babies ranging from a newborn to an eight month old. I loved sitting with lots of other mums, we were all feeding our babies and chatting, I think I’m definitely going to be going along every week. I always thought you would only go to a group like that if you had a problem but just one of the ladies today needed help, the rest were there for company and support.
6 Weeks old
Mia has fed every hour and a half since yesterday afternoon, I’m really tired and was worrying that maybe my milk wasn’t good enough or I was running out and didn’t have enough to keep her satisfied, especially as my breasts felt softer than they had been recently. I gave Laura a call and told her my concerns, she said it sounds like a growth spurt, I remember now it was mentioned at the breastfeeding support group, but it had totally gone out of my mind. I’m so glad to know my milk supply is fine and that Mia is just ‘putting in her order’ for more milk, as Laura put it, hopefully another day or so and we’ll be back to normal.
8 Weeks old
I took Mia along for her needles (immunisation) today and she got a little upset, but it was amazing how quickly she settled as soon as I breastfed her.
10 Weeks old
I’ve been invited out for a friend’s birthday next weekend and I’m unsure whether I can go or not. I talked it over with Laura and she came out to show me how to use a breast pump so I can leave some milk for Adam to feed Mia while I’m out. She’s settled into a bit of a routine now so I’m fairly sure it would only be one feed that I would be out for but I want to leave enough milk for two feeds just in case.
12 Weeks old
Well I did it, I went out last week! It was fine and Mia just woke for the one feed while I was out and Adam gave her the bottle of expressed breast milk.
16 Weeks old
Mia had been in such a good routine the last few weeks but has been feeding a lot more frequently the last day or so. My mother-in-law keeps telling me it’s time to get out the baby rice but all the leaflets say wait till six months. I was fairly sure it was another growth spurt so I called up the health visiting team and they reassured me that’s what it was and that she will settle down in the next few days. At least now I don’t feel the need to try solids yet.
6 Months old
Well the time has come to start introducing Mia to food! She’s been grabbing at our food for the last couple of weeks so I know she’s ready, she sits really well in her highchair and looks so cute! We’ve started with some cooked vegetables for now and she seems to enjoy them. I’m making sure she has her breastfeed first so I know she’s getting all the nutrients she needs, at the baby health club I was told that my milk makes up the most important part of her nutrition until she’s one, so I’m not worried about the amount she’s actually eating.
8 Months old
I go back to work next month and was thinking it would mean the end of breastfeeding for Mia and I. I mentioned this to Laura and we’ve chatted about how I can keep on going. Breastfeeding mums are entitled to a private place to express as well as a fridge to store the milk in and the time to do it. So, on her advice, I’ve contacted my HR department and followed their instructions. I’m so happy that I can continue to breastfeed as we both really enjoy our special time together and feel it will become even more important once she’s at nursery.
1 Year old
I feel so proud of myself, I never imagined I’d be still feeding at a year but now it just seems silly to stop as we both love it so much. Breastfeeding gives me a chance to have cuddles with Mia as the rest of the time she’s too busy exploring, so feeds are our quiet time together.