As it’s National Breastfeeding Week and I have quite a few New mummy and mummy-to-be readers, I thought I should write my experience of all things breast!
How many of you remember that awesome music video (Saltshaker remix of Boogie Pimps ‘Somebody to Love’) with the parachuting babies that land on the supermodels big bossoms? All their eyes see when looking at her is milk bottles. Well I’m pretty sure that’s true for breastfed babies. They don’t see mummy when they look at you, they see that glorious magic white stuff!
I was winding one of the twins the other day and she started wriggling. I wondered what she was doing so I watched as she snuffled and sniffed her way from shoulder to nipple, and then helped herself! What am I… a vending machine?
With my first daughter I don’t think I fully understood the latching on process. My nipples always hurt and I found breastfeeding a necessity rather than a joy. I got through an awful lot of Avent cream. My boobs were insanely engorged too. I went from a 32B to a 34DD overnight. I basically morphed into a cow. I felt like an actual COW! I remember squirting milk through my dressing gown from one side of the kitchen to the other an hitting the window! Sadly after I stopped breastfeeding, I morphed again from cow to frying pan with a dismal two 32A fried eggs in place of my udders.
I stopped breastfeeding after 5 weeks. You know the midwives always say “its supply and demand so you CAN’T run out of milk”… Well that’s a load of feel-good motivational bollocks! And if you’d seen me at 4am cradling a starving baby while we both bawled our eyes out because she had drank me dry, then you’d know.
This time around, I stunned even myself when it took me all of about 3 seconds to latch a baby on each side. I was sitting there on my hospital bed with my EZ 2 Twin nursing pillow with two newbies suckling away happily and thinking proudly to myself “wow that was textbook!” And it didn’t hurt. In fact the evenness of having both sides stimulated at the same time was quite relaxing – almost resemblent of a massage. Can’t say I’ve ever had a nipple massage or if they even exist outside of brothels but you catch my drift (or should that say you get my flow?!)
I chose to tandem feed the twins as its a massive time saver and makes it so much easier to get them into a routine. Gives them time to be close to each other as well as me and I love watching their gorgeous little feeding faces…
They peer at each other over my boobs too which is tres cute! The only problem with tandem feeding is that unless you’re a female bodybuilder with a busting set of guns, it seems to be impossible to do in public! So I just either take bottles of formula with me or only go out between feeds.
… YES I can switch between bust and bottle. NO there is no such thing as “nipple/teat confusion”. I’m pretty sure it was made up by a bunch of hippies or by formula companies to sell more products! But just to be on the safe side, I swear by Tommee Tippee bottles and use their natural boob shaped teat, as my defense, when interfering busybodies attack me on this subject!
So with supermum styley breastfeeding underway, It’s time to talk leakage! While breastfeeding in public is now thankfully a socially acceptable event; walking around with giant wetpatches on your front, like you’ve just been waterbombed, isn’t! So having tried and tested a few, here’s my opinion…
Babies R Us own brand – super soft, comfortable, but small and not very absorbent so you need to change them constantly.
Asda own brand – slightly more absorbent but not by much and these were not at all soft. In fact quite rough and uncomfortable.
Avent – Day and Night. Now I must say I was completely bewildered at the idea something as simple and uninteresting as a breast pad could have different ones for day as for night. I can’t say I really noticed the difference between them.except the colour of the packaging. Packaging galore too… Nothing environmentally friendly about these individually wrapped pads (genuinely individual – not even in pairs! Wtf?! Who needs just one?). So anyway these were bigger and thinner than the previous two types and incredibly absorbent so they lasted ages, but they were actually really rough despite being advertised as soft. I hated them.
Tommee Tippee – DO NOT be fooled (as I was) into thinking that by buying a box of these you’ll get the same ones as come with the breast pump… Those fantastic pads (of which they give you 5… Again we are back to the odd number of nipples issue!), they are just a teaser. The ones you actually get when buying a box, are rough and uncomfortable. They are however the thinnest and widest I’d tried.
Johnsons – I’m desperately searching for more of these as my local shops have sold out. They are mid size, quite thick but supersoft and really quite absorbent. Best part is they are the only brand I have found that actually make allowances for the fact they will be containing a nipple! They have little round dents to park them in that are just SOOO comfy!
Finally, I’m going to bore you some more with my speedy (because I’m getting carsick typing this post on my mobile while travelling) reviews on breastpumps…
Tommee Tippee hand pump… Time consuming, awkward but they get the job done… Eventually!
Tommee Tippee Electric… Crap crap crap! Noisey, temporamental, artificial feeling, PAINFUL and was most like getting blood out of a stone!
Medela Swing… Brilliant! Expensive but quiet, efficient, comfortable, adjustable settings and doesn’t feel as artificial as the TT.
The best of all was this big industrial beast I got to use in hospital…