I have a new bed time habit. Before I sleep, I make sure to read one inspiring story from the newly released book of Ms. Teresa Gumap-as Dumadag entitled, Breastfeeding: A Journey Worth Taking. Why? I think I need that added inspiration as sometimes (because I get so tired), I want to quit breastfeeding already.
My own breastfeeding journey is about to hit its 9th month as Zeeka turns 9 months on December 8. I can’t believe that I have made it this far. I clearly remember my own journey as I was reading the story of Teresa (which was almost similar to hers) and the other featured moms in this book about breastfeeding.
When I was pregnant with Zeeka, I had no clue on what breastfeeding was and could do for you or the baby. It was probably because I was a formula-fed baby. My sister and I were both formula fed. Mom said that during her time, the ‘uso’ (in trend) thing was to formula feed your baby. Since I wanted to learn more about breastfeeding (after hearing ‘Breastfeeding is still best for baby up to two years’ over and over again), I tried to attend workshops. I attended the workshops that were held at the Medela House.
These workshops opened our eyes to all the benefits of breastfeeding. There were a lot of moments of new discoveries and information during the times that I attended. We, my husband and I, became regular attendees of the workshops at Medela House and even of LATCH. Also, we were frequent goers to the La Leche League meetings held at Mothercare Active Fun.
After all of these classes and meetings, we thought we were 100% ready.
My Breastfeeding Journey
My breastfeeding journey started the minute Zeeka was born. Even if I had a C-Section, I really asked my doctor to make her latch on to me the minute she was cleaned. The hospital followed my instructions and Zeeka felt my warmth and tried to latch on within the first few minutes of her life. She was then brought our room after, because I requested for her to be roomed in with me. The first week was unbearable. Since both of us were learning, I had gotten sore nipples on the sixth day. My nipples were bleeding and it was really frustrating. I couldn’t count the number of times that I had cried during that week. I was saying, “ang hirap pala nito” realizing that breastfeeding wasn’t as peaceful and easy as it looks in magazines or in pictures.
I wanted to give up, but of course, I had to ask for help first before I really decide. I called Abbie Yabot and she visited me in our house. She taught me how to properly help the baby latch. Of course, the classes helped, but it was really different once you have the baby with you. Abbie helped me a great deal because after that, everything was easy. Once I had gotten the hang of it, I could breastfeed sitting down, standing up, etc.
The next moment that scared us was when Zeeka (we thought) was gaining not enough weight. We had to research on what breastfed baby’s should weigh at particular months. Also, she was still yellowish at 2 months. The doctor ordered for a blood extraction just to be sure that the bilirubin levels were low. Everything turned out to be perfectly fine. What I realized is that you should have a doctor who is really supportive of you breastfeeding your baby. I’m thankful that our doctor is very helpful and supportive!
The Breastfeeding: A Journey Worth Taking Book
I realized while I was reading the stories of these women that we all underwent challenges in our breastfeeding journey. None of them really said that it was a breeze from beginning to end. I guess this is what moms-to-be or even second-time moms, should expect. It isn’t a walk in the park.
You will need all the support and inspiration that you need. This is what you will get from reading Breastfeeding: A Journey Worth Taking. Teresa, a fellow work-at-home-mom, said that she wrote this book to inspire moms to breastfeed and to educate Filipino women on the benefits of breastfeeding. She also wrote this book to let moms know (through the featured moms’ stories) that it is possible to achieve their breastfeeding goals despite the situation or circumstance they find themselves in.
I am thankful that Teresa thought of writing this book. It is just pure inspiration for moms who really plan to breastfeed for the first year/s of their child’s life. I recall turning to Google for answers that I needed when it came to breastfeeding, but with this book, you get so much more. You get to read not only the technicalities and the straight-forward facts, but you also get a glimpse into the life of REAL women; women who have experienced the same situations and problems. They share, not only facts, but even what they felt during these experiences.
If you know couples who are expecting a child, I recommend that you get this as a gift for them. You can order a copy by emailing Teresa, the author at firstname.lastname@example.org or send her a message through her book’s Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/BreastfeedingJourneyWorthTaking.