Breastfeeding Journey Round Two! - Raising Up Wonder

Breastfeeding Journey Round Two!

This post is sponsored by Evivo but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

Ohhhhh breastfeeding.

Fact: I used to cringe at the word.

Why? Because I wasn't  able to breastfeed Avery. It ate me up inside because I let it. No matter how many times I told myself it was "okay" it still stung. I don't know why I was so sad about it but I think I just wanted it to work out so badly when it didn't, it hurt. I'm not exaggerating either, just the sight of another mama breastfeeding her baby would almost bring me to tears. Maybe that was postpartum blues too! I'm telling you this because I can say that I have been on both sides of this feeding spectrum.

I pumped/formula fed Avery and I've been breastfeeding Ryder for a year.

1 year.

Today I'm going to share about my experience with him but if you are interested in Avery's story hers is here.

Fresh out of the womb here! He was maybe 3 hours old? Side note, Ryder's umbilical cord was wrapped around his neck and he had trouble breathing. After I delivered him the doctors took him away from me for about 2 hours to get him stable. So I didn't get that first feeding in for a while. 

I feel like nursing in the hospital is a such a mess. Like you really don't know how well it's going until you do it for a few days. The hospital lactation people helped me and I felt like it was working. I was in pain right off the bat. I brushed it off though because some pain has to be normal? right?! I honestly don't know. I felt discouraged but I went through such a struggle with Avery I put my game face on and went all in. I spent a whole 72 hours in pure agony before I took my butt to Babies R Us to rent a pump. 

-Mother's Milk Lactation Capsules
-Lactation Cookies

This ^ is my recipe for making ALL THE MILK. (I took my placenta capsules too....that's another post for another day but I think they helped)

So I gave my poor nips a rest and Ryder's story started to look a lot like Avery's.

Avery had a lip/tongue tie and I didn't end up getting it revised. We just didn't have the right resources in WA for the revision. I checked Ryder for ties and sure enough he had a lip/tongue tie as well. I talked to my most favorite lactation consultant and got set up with a pediatric dentist in Redlands, CA. The procedure was RIDICULOUSLY easy. They just lasered off the tethers that were limiting his motion.

I'm not even going to lie I wanted nursing to be perfect and magical right after that procedure but it wasn't. It still hurt and he was still hungry, so I pumped in that dentist office and headed home.

Four days later things started to get better. Ryder was probably one month old by now going on 2. It wasn't perfect and I was tired so incredibly tired. I explicitly remember telling my mom "Don't let me have another baby, I'm too tired for this". Haha! This kid nursed ALL THE TIME AND I AM BEING SO FOR REAL I'M USING ALL CAPS. 2 weeks post revision I thought things were going pretty good despite the CONSTANT nursing. I reached out to so many people at this time like "Hey is it normal my baby is sucking on me like a LEECH every 2 minutes?"

and to be honest I wanted them to say "Nah girl, just quit, give the hubs a bottle and take a nap" but they didn't, they told me it was totally normal and to just keep going.

So I did and I literally nursed my nips off and justtttt when I thought we were getting it the Lord was keeping me humble by throwing a curveball.

Turns out when I went supply crazy with the cookies/supplements and pumping I gave myself a bit of an oversupply. So now when Ryder would eat he would choke. Unlatch. Latch. Choke. Unlatch and repeat until he could manage the flow. I literally had to pinch my nipple like a straw to slow the flow... TMI? No TMI's in motherhood.

But you guys.

After we got through this struggle it was beautiful.

Softest onesie ever! c/o Milo's Corner I can't say enough good things about this shop! Please go check them out! This is such a cute new baby/shower gift.

I finally understood why people called this breastfeeding thing beautiful, I finally understood the bond, I finally witnessed that milk drunk baby love. I was blessed. Soooooooo soooo blessed to be able to experience this with Ryder. I didn't get to have this with Avery and it really hurt.

I am just so grateful for everyone who helped me along the way. Friends who are reading this, thank you for telling me to keep going! The lactation consultant that helped me, so grateful for her! The doula that did my placenta thing, she encouraged me too! My Aunt T who told me to keep going when I wanted nothing more but to quit, I'm grateful for you! My mom who reminded me I could do this! All these people encouraged me and told me it would be worth it. If I didn't have their supoort I would have quit.

And I think that's a big problem in our country today. Our culture shouts "breast is best!" but where is the support for mothers when they leave the hospital? As new moms you need a lot of people on your team! So I hope that in the future moms can get home visits from a midwife or IBCLC in the first few days home. That might be far fetched but it would be amazing.

One thing I do wish was around at the beginning of our breastfeeding journey is the baby probiotic Evivo. Evivo is the first and only probiotic that is clinically proven to restore a baby’s gut microbiome to its original, natural state.

Babies are born with a sterile gut and depend on mom to pass on B. infantis, a beneficial bacteria, in the messy birthing process. Its this initial setup of good gut bacteria that helps fight off potentially bad bacteria as they grow—and this bad bacteria is linked to eczema, allergies, asthma, diabetes and obesity. But the last 100 years have seen a dramatic change in the baby’s gut microbiome and today, 97% of babies no longer receive B. infantis at birth. Its not moms fault, it’s a generational issue that’s attributed to the unintentional consequences of antibiotic use, C-section deliveries and less breastfeeding during the first six months of life.

With activated B. infantis, Evivo replaces what’s missing. In clinical trials, babies given Evivo had their gut restored 100% of the time. You can check Evivo out here:

There it is folks, my little tale on breastfeeding for the 2nd time. If you have questions, or just need a pep talk please email me! I'm here, I'm on your team and I'd love to talk.

In love, Rachel