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Breastfeeding Archives - Dry Mama

11 Dec

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Enjoying the Holidays with your Newborn

December 11, 2014 | By |

It’s that time of year again. Have you noticed? Sometimes a new baby can distract us so much that we forget what day it is! No need to worry! We have been looking around the blogosphere and found that many of you are enjoying your holidays with your new baby. Ready to go visit some other breastfeeding moms?

The Decorations

decorating babys first christmas treeTina with Carrotsncake.com took her newborn out to help choose baby’s first Christmas tree! Her baby is old enough to sit in a high chair while the family decorated the tree. If your baby is brand new, this will be the perfect opportunity to decorate while the baby sleeps.

Resist the temptation to go overboard with the décor, however. It feels very special to celebrate baby’s first holiday but remember, your baby won’t remember whether you pulled out all of the decorations this year or not.

The Food

If you’re nursing this time of year, it can be quite challenging to stay on top of a healthy diet. Too many sweets can lead to yeast infections or thrush for you and your baby. Allow yourself a treat, of course,  but moderation is the key.

Try a new tradition this year! Lisa Osborne with RaddestMom.com changed up the traditional pumpkin latte and pumpkin pie by creating a vegan and paleo friendly recipe. Check out her video recipe on her blog.

The Shopping

shopping with babyShopping for gifts with a newborn can be quite challenging. This mommy of two took both her toddler and infant out to the mall to enjoy some afternoon tea and gifts. She wears her baby while shopping to have a near hands-free shopping experience!

Getting out of the house can be tricky, however, as your baby may get hungry along the way. Be prepared with hydration and snacks for yourself as well. Many malls have nursing lounges now if you’re not sure about nursing in public. If you absolutely need to get out of the house, be flexible. Otherwise, you can also shop online.

Take Time to Slow Down

Dr. Leah Klungness, psychologist and co-author of the The Complete Single Mother, recommends, “Embrace the blessed help friends and family will offer. Your newborn will sleep just as soundly if cuddled by… not you. Grab a nap, take a soothing bath, or do whatever soothes your soul.”

breastfeeding success during the holidaysStress and sleep deprivation can cause decreased milk supply so remember to put yourself first on the list. Regan with TheAntiJuneCleaver.com suggests pumping and storing some milk in the freezer during the holidays so that you can enjoy your family and friends.

The holidays don’t have to be a stressful time if you’re prepared and flexible. Stop and appreciate it through the eyes of your new baby.

24 Nov

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Thankful to be a Mama

November 24, 2014 | By |

This is the time of year that many of us stop to reflect on our lives with gratitude. The shorter days and colder air naturally slow us down. As a new or nursing mother, there are endless reasons to be thankful all year round. Snuggle up with baby and let these thoughts warm your heart.

A Mother’s Love

Love is a many splendored thing. Love is all you need. There are billions of poems, sonnets and songs written in the name of love. Have you ever felt such love, however, as the moment your child is placed in your arms for the first time? It may be cliché to say that having a child is like your heart walking around outside your body but isn’t it true? Don’t you read those poems and sonnets and listen to those songs differently now? A mother’s love is the most powerful love there is and now you know. Now you understand what every heart has always longed to feel.

A Child’s Love

mother and childTurning things around for a bit, let’s take a moment to think about how your child loves you. As a nursing mother, the child is nourished and comforted at your breast. In your child’s mind, nursing brings memories of the stillness and dependence of being in the womb. You are providing your child with life. The thought alone is both overwhelming and tender at the same time. No one has ever loved you the way your child loves you. Except, perhaps, your own mother.

Hope

The miracle of new life brings light and hope into the world of a new mother. Birth brings to your mind thoughts of innocence, a new beginning, a second chance… hope. You have created, in effect, a clean slate to start over and build a beautiful person to send out into the world. It’s a grand responsibility and you have been chosen. Give thanks for the honor.

Your Body is Amazing

After spending 40 weeks or so carrying your child, you may feel as if your body no longer belongs to you. Pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding are all surreal and amazing experiences unlike nothing else you have ever done before. Can you give thanks for the way your body stretched, created a living being and now, naturally, feeds the person you’ve birthed from your very own skin?

It may be a little while before you feel some semblance of “normal” or close to how you felt before pregnancy, so in the meanwhile, celebrate it. Your body is amazing. Giving thanks to all that you have done will help you mentally, physically and emotionally.

Enjoy your baby, relish in the moments of warm cuddles and give gratitude for the honor of new motherhood.

24 Oct

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Breastfeeding & Breast Cancer

October 24, 2014 | By |

breast cancer awareness ribbonAs we all know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. Thankfully, there are many things that we can do to decrease our risk for breast cancer. With more and more research being done every year, physicians are offering more ways to educate and protect women from this often deadly disease.

I couldn’t be more proud to be an advocate of breast feeding than during this month. Did you know that breastfeeding decreases a woman’s risk for breast cancer? Let’s take a closer look at this awesome statistic.

Nurse your baby, Nurse yourself

According to the website BreastCancer.org, a non-profit educational resource with the most up-to-date research on breast cancer, a woman who breastfeeds for at least a year lowers her risk of breast cancer more than if she’d nursed for less than a year. If she continues to breastfeed for more than a year, her risk continues to decrease.

For every 12 months that a woman breastfeeds, the risk of breast cancer decreases by 4.3% compared to other women who do not breastfeed. (via cancer.org)

There are many reasons for this including the fact that if a breast is making milk, breast cells are not allowed the resources to do anything that would harm the body. It’s sort of amazing, isn’t it? The body naturally wants to take care of itself when providing nourishment to a child.

During breastfeeding, a woman’s estrogen levels are generally lower.

breastfeeding baby

Photo courtesy Aurimas Mikalauskas 

This also decreases the risk of breast cancer.

As we try to take better care of ourselves while breastfeeding our children – eating well and avoiding cigarettes and alcohol – we’re also lowering our risk of breast cancer as well.

In other words, taking care of your child benefits you as well!

Other Prevention Methods

I would be remiss to write an article about breast health and fail to mention other methods of breast cancer prevention. The Susan G. Komen Foundation offers a 4 step process to have breast health awareness:

  1. Know your risk – it is helpful to understand your family’s medical history
  2. Get screened – get regular breast exams with your doctor
  3. Know what is normal for you – check yourself every month so that you will recognize changes in your breasts
  4. Make healthy lifestyle choices – take care of your weight, your nutrition, your exercise and definitely breastfeed as long as you can.

While you’re nursing your beautiful baby, remember that your baby is getting the healthiest nutrition and you’re building more health for you too.