Breastfeeding While You’re Sick

I have been out for almost two or three weeks, been in and out of meetings and working on a special something. This plus the oh so hot (admit ko na – lagkit weather na may matching baskil for some or likod na basang basa ng pawis) weather resulted to my body surrendering. The stress and cray weather took its toll on my body and come Mother’s Day I had sniffles (sniff sniff).

Of course I did not allow this to stop our plan to celebrate Mother’s Day swimming and having our special dinner as well. (more about this in my next posts). The next day, my sniffles seemed to be a bit better (see yung swimming helped because my lungs worked extra – sabi ni E). I went to work ready to conquer my to-do’s, but after lunch I felt worse – boohoo! Even if I was blowing my nose and even if I consumed lots of fluids walang effect pa din. I seriously tried to make it until 5 PM before I asked Q, my boss, if I can go home (di na kinaya talaga ng katawan ko).

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I rested the whole night and still went to work Tuesday and Wednesday (kasi nga work work work work work) but finally decided to go on sick leave Thursday and Friday too. Now, I know that you will ask me if I still breastfed Bunny and the answer is YES. YES I continued breastfeeding her even if I had cough, cold, and fever. Not because I wanted her to get sick too, but because I want her to get the anti-bodies that she needs so that she won’t get what I have or if she does get what I have she’ll feel better soon or not that severe yung sa kanya.

Bunny taking care of mommy

Bunny taking care of mommy

Some would probably be shaking their heads because our lolo’s and lola’s would have said na bawal, no because mapapasa or my baby will get it too. To be honest, I too believed this way back then and actually stopped breastfeeding Bunny when I had flu (this was during our first month) but then I researched after and it is more recommended to continue breastfeeding even while you are sick.

Momma’s milk is really good for babies and again as I mentioned, your milk creates anti-bodies that is special for your little one. Even if I was down Thursday and Friday, Bunny only had mild fever morning and sniffles but not that severe. She still played non-stop and was still as kulit as ever!

Bunny playing with Bootleg

Bunny playing with Bootleg

Still don’t believe me? My other proof was when I got chicken pox last year. People around me told me to stop breastfeeding Bunny, but I insisted that she needs my milk more. I would cover my whole body and just expose my booby when she needs to feed. I would also pump so that she is not as exposed (the hard part really was not to hold her close and not kiss her goodnight for two weeks – my heart). She never got chicken pox, although she was grumpier because mommy-bunny time was cut short due to my pox.

So, if you get sick I highly recommend (if not super severe naman yung sickness) to continue still breastfeeding but make sure that you consult with your doctor for meds you can take. Here’s my usual flow when I get sick:

  1. If I’m not feeling well – check temperature and drink lots of water
  2. Check with my doctor or with E what meds to take (E is my personal nurse because he’s a RN)
  3. Check E-Lactancia if my meds are compatible with breastfeeding moms if not raise it up with my doctor so we can look for an alternative
  4. Get lots of rest and drink lots of fluids

I hope this helps prove that really, breastfeeding is still best when you are sick. Don’t stop just because you are sick just check with your doctor (best if she’s a breastfeeding advocate) and make sure that your meds is okay for lactating moms! Happy Breastfeeding mommies!

12 Months and Counting

Yesterday, my little girl turned one! (YAAAAY)

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I met my first big goal as her mum, which is to breastfeed her exclusively for a year. Great big pat on the back for me (woot woot!). I never really thought that I will be able to complete breastfeeding my tiny human for 12 whole months! Why? I usually hear moms saying (even my own mum) that the milk just goes away after 6 months or that the milk is not enough that is why they switch to formula or they get sick and switch to formula. While I totally understand mummies who mix feed or formula feed their tiny humans, I had set that goal of mine even before she was born and I was determined to keep at it for as long as I can.

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To say that my breastfeeding journey was a walk to the park would be an untrue documentation of my experience. I did go through a lot of downs which almost made me quit in giving her my liquid gold, but discipline, determination, and confidence in myself helped me push through. (ACHIEVE!) I mean, I experienced having an extremely low output (at 2-3 oz per pump) when I had to deal with extreme work deliverables paired with 5 hours of sleep. Still I pushed through and decided to help myself by going crazy over lactation treats.

treats

 

The biggest challenge I faced was acquiring chicken pox! In my mind, how will I continue breastfeeding my bunny when I have pox all over my body? Can I breastfeed her even if I have it? Can I still pump even I have pox? Will my meds be bad for her?

So I researched and researched, and I did find the answer thanks to the breastfeeding groups I was a member of. I persisted in breastfeeding her. My aunt, mum, dad, and e took care of her while I was sick. I pumped in the morning, but eventually direct latched her just making sure that I cover my whole body and just expose ’em mountains. I will hand her off to my mum, dad, aunt, or e after. I wasn’t allowed to carry her or kiss her or hug her until the pox faded. At night, before we enter our room I sprayed lots and lots of Lysol and again covered my whole body, just exposing ’em mountains as she slept next to me. This was us for a week and a half. Thankfully she never got the pox, and I succeeded in breastfeeding her even if I had the pox. (If you have it and your breastfeeding, suggest you continue breastfeeding. Chicken pox has a two week incubation period meaning your tiny human was already exposed to it so she actually needs your milk more!)

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Now, even if I hear other people telling me that I don’t have milk anymore and should switch to formula I just say no. I still have a bigger goal in mind, which is to breastfeed her for 2 years. I have learned from my experience that you need not have expensive electric pumps or a freezer filled with breast milk just to succeed in your choice to breastfeed your tiny human. What you need is:

  1. Confidence and support – this is the most important thing, mommy! You need to believe in yourself, that you can do it. When you believe in your body’s capability to provide for your tiny human you will see that your milk will keep on flowing. Of course you will need support from your hubby. Don’t mind what other people say, but you should get him on the same boat. Thankfully E is very supportive, he is a registered nurse so he knows the benefits of breastmilk
  2. Discipline and Determination – This is second most important must have mum. As a working mommy, I have scheduled pumping sessions. Thrice a day, every 3 hours. So that’s at 10 AM/1 PM/4 PM. Of course there are times when I miss out on a pumping session, but I make sure that I make up for it the next day. It’s a law of supply and demand at work here. When you pump you empty the milk out which triggers your body to produce milk again. You should also set goals for yourself, just so that you will be determined to keep at your breastfeeding journey milk
  3. Water, lots of water – Drink as many as you possibly can. Seriously! You need it. You will even fill that thirst that seems to never go away every time your tiny human nurses or when you pump. (Just as if you are in a dessert for days)
  4. Support Group of Breastfeeding Moms – This I found through Breastfeeding Pinays and Breastfeeding Advocates Group on Facebook. I learned a lot of things from mums and also got support from mums here.

I’m finished with my first big goal, now I am back to my tiny goals. Aim now is to meet 15 mos!

3 months to go

90 days

2,160 hrs

129,600 minutes

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