It’s National Breastfeeding Awareness Week (20-26th June 2014) and just like last year I’m joining in with the Keep Britain Breastfeeding Scavenger Hunt. Last year I wrote a post every day but considering I’m not currently breastfeeding and the fact it’s coinciding with Britmums Live, I’ve decided to do just two posts.
When I look back to the very first time I experienced breastfeeding I remember the day P1 was born. With her prematurity I felt obliged to give her breast milk. The nurses told me that it would give her the best chance of survival. I was never told why or how but at 16 years old I wasn’t going to question anything and from that day I spent hours each day expressing my milk by the bucket load to take into my special care baby.
I didn’t get to breastfeed properly with P1, she couldn’t master the sucking reflex and my milk dried up just before she came out of hospital at 27 days old. With P2, I was much more clued up. I had a decision to make with regards to how she was going to be fed. Hubby was very set on breastfeeding but I wasn’t so sure at first so during my pregnancy I did plenty of breastfeeding research.
At first I wanted to do the first month of breastfeeding. That month turned into 6 very emotional and very rewarding months. I felt abandoned when P2 actually chose to stop feeding from me. Third time round I haven’t even given the way I’m going to feed the new baby a second thought. It’s without a doubt going to be breastfeeding.
Breastfeeding is certainly in the press lately and I feel very lucky to have had an amazing experience with P2. All three of my girls will get the goodness of breast milk inside them. They’ve all experienced the health benefits of breast feeding and there’s plenty.
It’s the only natural food designed for your baby, I’m not here to condemn formula milk or formula fed babies, but there’s no escaping that formula milk is made to suit every baby whereas breast milk is made to suit your individual baby. No breast milk is the same.
It helps to protect your baby from infections and diseases. A drop of breastmilk contains around one million white blood cells. These cells gobble up germs. Breastmilk is also packed with immunoglobulin A which coats the lining of babies’ immature intestines, preventing germs from leaking through. When a baby is exposed to a new germ, a mother’s body makes antibodies to that germ. These antibodies pass through to the baby in her milk.
The bond and attachment I have with P2 is intense. Despite our breast feeding journey being over for the past 10 months I still see and experience the closeness we have. It’s definitely stronger than the bond I shared with P1 at this age, although it doesn’t mean I love them any different. There’s a sense of need that P2 has that’s different to the need P1 had. I’m her comforter in a completely different way than just being her mum.
Let’s not forget the benefits for me, oh and Daddy’s too. Breastfeeding burns plenty of calories each day helping to lose that baby weight we spend hours complaining about. It’ll also save lots of money which I’m sure will please Daddy as it’s completely free and available on tap. There’s no having to remember whether you’ve made enough bottles for the night, or getting into bed and realising you’ve forgotten to sterilise the bottles and having to wait up extra time. It’s available whenever and wherever your baby needs a feed.
This post is part of the Keep Britain Breastfeeding Scavenger Hunt. Enter to win using the Rafflecopter below)
Our company Freeva has also donated to the Grand Prize & have a separate competition running with Sorry About The Mess so please watch out for that.