Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Breastfeeding Hurdles + A Giveaway


Breastfeeding has been an absolutely amazing journey for me.  You guys have heard me say this multiple times, but after going through what we had to to actually have a baby I wasn't sure if my body was going to cooperate when it came to nursing either, fortunately for me, it did and for close to 11 months now Georgia has been exclusively breast fed mamas milk. 
 I won't lie, the first 3 weeks are torture.  A lot of books and LC's will say that if breastfeeding is painful that something is not right, but I tend to disagree with that.  I'm sorry but no ones nipples are used to being sucked on for hours on end.  There will be pain, there could be cracking, & there might be bleeding.  Like in my case.  Luckily with a little Neosporin, some pumping, and a lot of tears, I was able to heal in a couple days and continue on successfully nursing. 

For the first several months I had no issues at all, I got a clogged duct one time but other than that I didn't experience any trouble at all.  At the end of August Joe's dad had decided to stop chemo treatments and we spent an entire week at my in-laws in his last days of life.  Georgia spent some time with us at their house but I ended up bringing her to day care most of those days as it was just easier.   I was lax with my pump and was not keeping a consistent schedule, letting too much time lapse between sessions, and eventually because of the neglect ended up with about 3 clogged ducts in a week and a significant decrease in my supply.  The thing about breastfeeding is it is 100% supply and demand.  If you pump & nurse often (and consistently) you're signaling to your body how much your baby needs.  Once you stop demanding milk from your body, your supply will drop & that is exactly what happened to me.

I struggled to get my supply back up once I returned to work after Joe's dad passed & I never really did get it back to what it was.  Before this happened I was making an average of about 15oz a day in 3-4 pumping sessions, this decreased down to about 12oz which was exactly what I sent Georgia to day care with each day so I had little to freeze.  For some reason I became slightly obsessed with having at least 3oz. per day sent to the freezer and this was just not happening anymore.  

As we began to introduce solids to Georgia and she became better with eating, my body again took notice and my supply decided to dip yet again.  It was very discouraging as there were several times I would pump and have less than an ounce of milk on my left side, and roughly 1-2oz from the right, about half of what I had normally been getting.  I was really afraid that I might be drying up.  So I did what I always when I'm looking for advice and took to Instastories!  I got tons of different recommendations for supplements, and different cookie recipes, drinks, etc. but ultimately ended up with UpSpring Milk Flow berry supplement drink.  It has no artificial anything in it, and contains 1800mg of Fenugreek per scoop along with blessed thistle.  You can take it up to 3x a day in 8oz. of water, I did 2x a day.

You guys, I had AMAZING results with this stuff.  I ended up going from about 6oz. pumped a day to 10, 11, and 12oz. pumped a day.  UpSpring was also absolutely amazing as well, encouraging me and responding to my posts when I would tag them in my stories.  It's definitely nice to be able to have the support from the company you are using and they did not disappoint.


I can tell you again after vacation that my supply is again beginning to dip so I plan to start the berry mix drink again to boost it back up.  I know that our breastfeeding journey is going to be coming to an end in about 6 weeks, but I would like to finish that out strong and be able to reach my goal of one year.  It does make me sad to think that that bond will soon be over for us but I am excited to see what is next for us when it comes to building our family and I am ready to get my body where it needs to be in order for any further embryo transfers to happen.  

I am so thankful to everyone who has supported our nursing journey so far.  There have been some really amazing women who have shared their stories and advice with me long before Georgia was ever born and I feel like I would never be as successful as I have been if it wasn't for their support.  I believe it's important that we continue to advocate for breastfeeding education and to normalize breastfeeding in our society today.  


Upspring Baby has been kind enough to allow me to host a giveaway of some of their products including the MilkFlow berry flavored supplement drink mix, MilkScreen test strips, Fertility+ Capsules, and Organic Coconut Oil Nipple Balm.  You can enter by heading over to my Instagram or by leaving a blog comment on this post for an entry!   

13 comments:

  1. I am 12 weeks into exclusively pumping for my son (he was in the NICU for a couple weeks and he never made the switch from the bottles of pumped milk they were giving him). I have a toddler at home too and between caring for the two of them my supply has dipped a couple times already! I too started taking MilkFlow and saw a significant increase, that stuff is amazing! Good luck on the rest of your breastfeeding journey, it really is the greatest, I much prefer it to being strapped to this pump all the time :)

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  2. I have an almost 7 month old and we've already been supplementing with formula. I can tell my supply is dipping more and would be so interested to try this out and see what happens!

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  3. Thanks for sharing your experience! You’re so right, breastfeeding is the hardest yet most rewarding thing I’ve ever done. I breastfed my first for 1 year and I’m 2 months in with my second baby now. I’m going back to work on Monday, and while I have a good bit of frozen milk in my stash I’m a bit concerned that I won’t be able to keep up with him once I go back. I’m always interested in things that will help my supply!

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  4. Breastfeeding has been the best, most rewarding, hardest thing I have ever done for my kids! Currently pumping at work right now! :)

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  5. Thanks so much for sharing your story! I'm about to make it to 12 months exclusively breastfeeding, it's been a struggle because my son never took a bottle. It's been so frustrating trying to keep my supply up.

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  6. Thanks so much for sharing your story! I'm about to make it to 12 months exclusively breastfeeding, it's been a struggle because my son never took a bottle. It's been so frustrating trying to keep my supply up.

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  7. Thanks so much for sharing your story! I'm about to make it to 12 months exclusively breastfeeding, it's been a struggle because my son never took a bottle. It's been so frustrating trying to keep my supply up.

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  8. With my daughter, nursing was never a problem, but pumping didn’t produce much. Now that I’m expecting again, I’ll look forward to trying Upspring’s products to see if they will help me pump more.

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  9. Love seeing all your posts and blogs. I'm 29wks pregnant with my 3rd baby and with my other 2 I made JUST enough milk for about 6 months nursing/pumping. My goal for this baby is 1 year and I know I'll need help with it. Loved seeing the results you've gotten from this product! :)

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  13. I'm excepting my little princess in the beginning of December and been doing a lot of research about breastfeeding and getting myself prepared!!

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