Guide to Breast Pumps

August 4, 2011 § 7 Comments

I am also asked every now and then what breast pump I use. I got several friends who also bought the same brand but some friends find it too expensive. Although I think majority in the group uses Medela pumps (I used MedelaFreestyle) I remember reading about other well recommended breast pumps that are cheaper in N@W so I asked them to recommend and tell more about their breast pumps.  Here’s what I got:

Ameda Purely Yours

From Meng: I used Purely Yours of Ameda. It’s basically the same with Lansinoh, but brand new is a bit pricier than Lansinoh (am not sure why).  I wanted to buy din Medela sana noon, but my cousin advised that Ameda is still better and a lot cheaper.

From Maize: I’m using Lansinoh double electric pump for about 10 months already. It’s so cheap but works really great. I bought it from Mi’Ann of Babymama. During the first few weeks post partum, I had difficulty latching Brent. Kaya I resorted to pumping. I was able to exclusively pump for less than two weeks then after that, Brent learned to latch na. That pump helped me produce a lot of milk during the days na di ako makapag-direct feeding. Now that I’m working, nagagamit ko siya 3-4x a day. It usually takes  3-4 months before having to change valves. Kaya I would say laking tipid ko sa pump na yun and di na-sacrifice ang quality. I’m able to pump 16-20 oz during my 9-hour work. I really recommend Lansinoh double electric pump to budget-conscious working moms like me. Very portable, lightweight, easy to assemble, nice color, fits all standard size bottle, inexpensive, and very good quality. 🙂 Bought it for 7k, with 3 pairs of white valves free. Complete spare part kit is 1500 if needed to be replaced. I use it 3 to 4x every workday. But during the first 2 weeks of breastfeeding, I used it every 2hrs round the clock.

On Manual Pump naman, which I heard is more effective but yung nga with effort talaga.

Manual Pump

From Iya: My very first pump was Pigeon manual. It was ok and effective naman but tried 2 more just to know which one is really effective (more milk being expressed) Price is 2K in Rustan’s. The second one Medela also a manual pump. My friend lent it to me but didn’t like it, it was painful and the membrane was so delicate.  May milk din na su-stuck sa mga gilid gilid na mahirap matanggal. The last and what I’m currently using is Avent Manual On-the-Go.  I bought online sa TipidBABY pROducts.  Can’t remember the exact amount but it was around 3,500-3,800.  It has a bag and 2 4oz bottle plus ice pack so you can express it when you’re outside or away from baby. Avent became my favorite. It doesnt hurt when expressing and dami milk lumalabas and mabilis ako natatapos mag express. So for me  avent breast pump talaga.

Will add more as they come.

Hope this helped!

Guide to a Breastfeeding Newbie

August 4, 2011 § 2 Comments

I know new moms have so much on their mind and even those who are dead set on breastfeeding sometimes fail because there’s lack of preparation and all sorts of reasons come in. Some find it hard to actually pursue because they thought it will come naturally like pregnancy & birthing. Well it is but there are several bottleneck on the breastfeeding journey that I would advice new moms to learn about it and find out as much as they can.  Yes online reads are very helpful but to actually join a support group is the most ideal, aside from you actually get inspiration from those who were able to do it you also get to find your support group. There is nothing more powerful than knowing people who actually did it, I think about my friend who did it and tell myself doable yan ang daming naka gawa eh.

Here are ways to arm yourself with breastfeeding knowledge before birth. (I personally think the work is 5x harder if you start seeking help when you are actually there na. I even think that is 95% why breastfeeding fails, the other 5% is medical condition na.)

1. Attend classes to learn how to breastfeed

a. L.A.T.C.H. (Lactation, Attachment, Training, Counseling, Help) is a hospital based non-profit organization established in 2006 that offers quality lactation education and peer counseling services to mothers who wish to breastfeed.

LATCH will have a FREE breastfeeding talk  at The Medical City (TMC) this August 13, 2011 from 9:00-12;00 nn. Best to attend with  partner/support person.

Read about What to Expect During LATCH Classes. I have never been to their class so I have no first hand info.

b. Medela Moms – they are the exclusive and authorized distributor of Medela Breast Pumps here in the Philippines, they also accept repair and check ups for pumps even if bought abroad or thru online sellers. They hold breastfeeding classes in 3 modules. I will try to get hold of their modules and schedule and price too. Will update this as soon as I get them.

Breastfeeding 101: Sept. 10 (1:30pm-3:30pm)
Breastfeeding 202: Oct. 15   (9:00am-11:00am)
Breastfeeding 303: Nov. 19 (8-10am)    

To register, just email back or text 0917-5614366. Indicate if you will be accompanied or not (for the snacks’ headcount :). Fee is P500 for 3 classes

c. Join birthing classes, usually those who are interested to do birthing the natural way are also the same people who are very interested in breastfeeding. I know of two groups that offer birthing classes. That of Chiqui Brosas-Hanh & the one from Rome Kanapi. I recommend these classes to first time mom, we took it when we had Kite and we learned a lot, you dont have to want to do Lamaze or anesthesia free birthing o join the class, we joined it to learn about birthing and just know more.  Classes included newborn care & touches on breastfeeding too.

Chiqui’s Prepared Childbirth Class
PCC 202

AUGUST-SEPTEMBER CLASS 2011 (4 Sundays)
DATE: (Aug. 21, NO CLASS), Aug. 28, Sept. 4, 11, 18
TIME: 2:00-5:00PM

Prepared Childbirth Class
PCC 203
SEPTEMBER- OCTOBER 2011 (4 Sundays)
DATE: Sept. 25, Oct. 2, 9, 16 (or 23, not confirmed which of the two dates)
TIME: 2:00-5:00PM

NOTE: Please complete contact information so we could inform you if there will be any changes in the schedule, venue or time.
GLOBE: Olive +63917-4770628
EMAIL: birthtimes@gmail.com

2. Join breastfeeding support meet. This is to make the journey fun and to have some people to talk to for support when the going gets tough.

a. La Leche League Phils is formed by Abbie Yabot it is an international support group organization for expectant and nursing parents. Meets twice a month, every 4th Saturday at Mothercare Greenbelt 5 at 1030am, join their facebook page to get latest update re meet schedule it changes sometimes eh. (I attend this one as much as I can)

b. The BreastFriends Support Group – join their YahooGroup for meet update, though the mailing list is inactive you can still post your questions and get the ball rolling. The group meet every 2nd Saturday in Baby & Co. Podium at 10:30am confirm muna if there is a class before attending, they require registration thru text too. (I attended this one a few times)

3. I got Nanay Lita Nery to massage me to prepare me for birthing and also massage me to help me relax and guide me in breastfeeding Kite the first time and again when I had Laya. I heard she no longer accepts pre natal massage because of her busy schedule. Actually I tried getting her services when I wanted to relax but she couldn’t fit me in her schedule. But am glad she made time for my friends who were in dire need, so I am assuming she picks whom to go to base on the urgency of the case and I commend her for that 🙂 Call Nanay Lita at 0918.5557565

Now that you have armed yourself and prepared for it. Here naman are the list of people to go to if you encounter problems Breastfeeding Counselors in the Philippines or if you need to consult or ask for help call the Latch Warmline 0917.5325643 (pls remember the people in Latch are ALL volunteer moms so there might be days when it takes a while before a reply is given) start rate for home visit consultation with Latch volunteers is at P500.

In case you are wondering what you need to buy to prepare for breastfeeding well NONE, you dont even need to buy a breast pump. Pumping is suggested when you reach 6 weeks na so wait for the need to buy before you go and buy one. I am also asked what pump I used I used Medela Freestyle Pump, I got it from an online seller. I am very happy with my choice and have recommended that too to several friends. But that doesnt mean it is the only good pump. I am actually now on a hunt for cheaper pump.

Hope this gives you a headstart for now. See you in one of the meets I hope 🙂

Mga breastfeeding friends, if you are willing to accept emails from people you dont know please leave your name & contact info or blog info sa comments so they can also go to you if ever.

Laya’s Breastfeeding Story

August 2, 2011 § 9 Comments

After sharing my Breastfeeding Story of Kite. Here is Laya’s naman:

We had Laya 11 years after Kite and 11 years din after forming NewlywedsAtWork (N@W) so we were armed with a thriving support group whose members have practically been through everything that could possibly happen, we have all kinds of moms there: breastfeeding moms, formula feeding moms, mixed feeders, those who had a hard time breastfeeding, never attempted breastfeeding, longing to be a mom, wouldn’t want to be a mom ever, being a mom more often than they would want to and what have you. I knew motherhood will be so much more fun this time with so many mommies to run to for any of my most trivial questions. I knew my chances of successfully breastfeeding Laya is high, as I am very good friends with Velvet and Abbie who are experts and studied breastfeeding (their actual title escape me now); am friends too with Jenny who’s blog Chronicles of a Nursing Mom is all about breastfeeding; am friends with a lot of the members of Latch (another breastfeeding group) and there’s so many breastfeeding moms in N@W (that we can even form our own breastfeeding group if needed), need I add more? Ahh I almost forgot, hubby Abet is I think keener than me in making this breastfeeding business a success.

Hubby would bribe me by saying sige breastfeed ka, if you are still breastfeeding mag Cebu na tayo as reward by May. Syempre ako atat sa lakwatcha kaya effective naman his idea. We stayed in a hotel muna for a night to try it out. Successful kami so we went to Tagaytay for a night the week after to see if we can do it again and see how Laya behaves to traveling, aba it was easy! Off we went to Cebu as soon as Laya turned 1 month old 🙂 Hiya ko lang tumigil after Cebu diba? hahaha

Seriously, I think what really clinched it for me was hearing Mimi say I never entertained the thought I wont be able to breastfeed, basta ako mag be-breastfeed, it was so simple, yet so powerful! Whenever I wanted to stop or doubted I would remember how she said it and I remember, of course I am going to continue breastfeeding.

Let me start on the day I gave birth. I was induced March 29 and had Laya that afternoon. Wasn’t able to see Laya again til 12 hours after, by then I was told she was given glucose water already. Am old na, I dont sweat the small stuff anymore. Fine, I just told the nurse nothing anymore after that kasi I will purely breastfeed. I tried to make Laya latch and was so happy she took it in so naturally but she wasn’t hungry and was more interested to sleep. Me too, I wanted to sleep too so I went back to my room na but I requested rooming in of Laya as soon as possible. Well she was roomed afternoon na. And Velvet, my one and only visitor (we didn’t let friends visit kasi we intend to breastfeed so we dont know the schedule when Laya would want to feed, ayaw ko naman mag feed with visitors around; she dont do personalvisits anymore ha, she did it for me lang kasi love niya ako heheh) was able to visit me that day to help make sure I will be off to a good start. She watched and taught me how to latch, taught us to look at the jaw to watch and listen to her swallow, to feed and feed and feed by demand, to not even look at the clock and worry just let baby lead, to put as much of the areola in and make sure it is not just the nipple (it is the nerves in the areola that signals the mind to produce milk) most common mistake is the latching, if you latch right I think there’s 80% success. Velvet also taught us how to massage Laya. We had a smooth breastfeeding routine with Laya at the hospital that night.

As we were about to discharge from the hospital the next day I felt pain in my nape, it felt exactly what they said high blood pressure would feel like, had my BP taken yes it was getting high. I was still discharged but what I was feeling was scary na. Got home and immediately texted Nay Lita Nery (lactating masseuse) to help relax me and at the same time make sure latching is correct. She came and taught me how to feed lying down and I think 2 more positions. My BP remained high and went higher pa. The fact it was Maundy Thursday made things worse for me as I didnt want to go to the hospital on Good Friday all my doctors are away! To make things worst I was also instructed by my OB not to take care of Laya and I am not allowed to breastfeed at night! Huwat? I didnt want to feed formula and I didnt have extra milk. Worst I didnt have a yaya as the yaya who will take care of Laya is our helper whom I haven’t trained yet. And hubby the only other possible person to take care is sniffing and looks like he is going to get sick! Oh that was one super stressful Thursday for me. Lucky I have friends! First Dee came to the rescue she not only gave me milk, she delivered it pa! I had no way of getting the milk at this point (this is also why whenever I donate and I feel that the mom or dad asking for the milk have no way of getting I do personal deliver of the milk as much as I can, aside from not knowing how to handle the milk it is a really a very busy time for new parents). Milk problem solved! Now I needed someone to care for Laya, one whom I can safely leave Laya with, lucky for me Medical City’s nurse station helped me secure one. Sigh! All my immediate problems are solved. The midwife stayed with us that night and cup fed Laya. I wasnt able to sleep a wink. It was hard having somebody else in our bedroom and I missed Laya too. Oh added to the already stressful situation was my dilemna, all the ge-lai food I should eat are also the same food a high blood patient shouldn’t be eating ayayyay! Good think my childhood friend Nancy (my friend since I was 1 year old) took me under her wing, she’d cook a big pot of whatever food I am to eat that day, she’d bring it to me before lunch and then I would reheat the remaining portion for dinner (inaagawan pa ako ni Abet! kasi yummy) she’d carefully choose and ask what are the food allowed sa ge-lai and allowed sa high blood, yes fish nga with lotsa soup! She’d bring it to our place while I am asleep and would teach my helper what to do with it. Am so blessed with so many friends talaga those days! We got over the high blood episode on Easter Sunday (so apt no?), and the midwifes trained Laya’s yaya on how to care for a baby too, she can do everything except she is not comfortable giving Laya a bath. Fair enough, I am also not comfortable entrusting Laya’s bath to her yet.

Breastfeeding Laya was smooth but it was hard. There’s pain, lack of sleep, doubts and a whole lot of other things. Major was the feeling na I cant function, cant do anything kasi a needy child is relying on me and would need me anytime. I remember it was Mother’s Day and I was awake middle of the night so I took that time to greet my mommy friends and hopefully disrupt their sleep. I was at this point wanting to stop breastfeeding na kasi am tired and aching and was really finding a valid reason to stop. Eh yun nga wala akong nahanap na reason so I went on. Every step of the way when the going got tough I would do mass texting, (my regular text victims were Velvet, Abbie, Jenny, Rica, JenCC, Dee, Mimi… either some or all of them hmm forgot who else) always may 2 or 3 na sasagot hehe. I also started going to Abbie’s La Leche Meet and also Breastfriend at Mary the Queen. I started going with so many hang ups, questions and I got my groove there. So my BF Support Group friends saw me turn into a swan. They were with me through all my issues and now am with them egging the newer ones to go on. Now am paying it forward na.

Why am I blogging about my breastfeeding story? 1. It is breastfeeding month kasi. and 2. After reading Confessions of a milk machine and Breastfeeding: It’s a Choice I felt the urge to blog or say my piece. But I also do not like to be perceived as puro breastfeeding na lang. The blog by Frances or better known as TopazMommy, I don’t want to be a lactivist, is so so true. So there.

While I am on a roll let me share na din Why I love breastfeeding.

1. It is so convenient. We just bring a small bag with change of diapers and clothes and a small towel to wipe and we are ready to go anywhere.

2. Because I breastfeed, I had a very easy time taking care of Laya, imagine we went on an overnight stay before she turned 1 month and had her riding an airplane by 6 weeks old, went out of the country for 6 weeks when she turned one.

3. Breastfeeding is the solution to everything! She falls? I feed her and she is ok; She is cranky? I feed her and she is ok; She got hurt? I feed her and she is ok; when she wants something she cant have and is about to throw a fit, I show her my booby and she forgets everything. Breastfeeding her solved EVERYTHING!

4. You know whats amazing, you have booby antennas that tells you your kid is hungry, you actually feel it before she cries that it is feeding time! The things you will realizes are simply so amazing.

5. I watch her feed and the muscle movements from her cheek, tongue and jaws am sure help her so much, while bottle feeder just suck and the milk comes out, the breastfeeder work on it so early and get to use na their muscles.

6. A breastfeeding baby can detect boobies even while asleep. This one still amazes me until now. Sometimes at night I just watch her and she knows which direction to face and when to open her mouth! Amazing talaga.

7. Breastmilk cures everything. I was a cynic too at first, OA naman yan ano magic? Have a cut? Rash? Itch? Put breastmilk and it really does cure! Did it and it worked 🙂

Miss U moments:

People who made it possible for me and helped me with this mommy journey!

Velvet – who would be my rah rah girl talaga throughout the journey. Did I also mention I met up with her for a one on one session on what to do with a newborn aside from about breastfeeding? And when I was looking for a midwife to care for Laya and was not getting anywhere she even offered to yaya Laya sa house namin, papahatid siya kay Atan and stay the night in our place, grabe my heart was filled with gratitude for that text she sent. Super duper thank you Velvet! I owe you!

Dee – she sent me milk when I wasn’t able to breastfeed, if I resorted to formula then and had a taste of convenience I am pretty sure I it would be super hard for me and will constantly be tempted. I also learned from her how to pack and freeze the milk, hers was so flat and so pretty to look at!

Mimi – since she is always no nonsense and frills free I go to her when I am stressed and true enough her ways are the simplest.

Rica – she is like me oldie na and habol baby na lang ito so we can relate with each other, her amazing story of being able to pump 16 oz in one sitting helped motivate me to reach that level.

Nancy, Grace & Morning – oh these are my childhood friends who fed me and made sure I dont stop the ge lai thing. Morning and I had a one on one session too on the meds and drinks to take.

Abbie, Jenny, JenCC, Rica – for always receiving my text and for most of the times replying 🙂

Didda – for making it so clear stop breastfeeding is not an option.

Laya is 16 months old now and we are still breastfeeding. She’s been taking solids since she was 6.5 months old and had her first taste of cow’s milk in Australia. Am now trying to let her get used to the taste of cows milk so she have milk to drink when I go out at night in preparation for the time I go out of the country. She is so loving the chocolate milk from MilkMan, yung fresh milk sometimes she likes sometimes she doesn’t, so what we do we milk the choco milk with milk na lang.

Again, if you are breastfeeding or would like to breastfeed, please know you can drop me a line here or thru my email or thru my facebook or text me if you have it. Would be more than happy to be part of your breastfeeding journey.

Kite’s Breastfeeding Story

August 2, 2011 § 2 Comments

Let me share with you my story on breastfeeding Kite.

Abet & I just got married when we had Kite, being so young and ideal, we wanted the purest and the best. We started by taking the Birthing Class from Chiqui Brosas-Hahn, there we also learned about breastfeeding.

When Kite arrived we breastfed, when she feed in one breast the other would leak so I was told that means I have lots of milk. And I believed. But when Kite was 10 days old she developed fever for a few hours, my sister told me to have her checked since fever is not normal for newborn. We went to her pedia the next day, she was surprised to see Kite lost weight. She was scared Kite might have sepsis and is poor in sucking that is why she isn’t able to take enough milk. She made us go home and asked us to monitor Kite’s intake and output; and to also make her consume at least 20-24 oz of milk in 24 hours, if she cant then we need to confine her, also to get urine sample for testing and culture. She peed so little and trying to catch them in a container was so hard, it was midnight when we were finally able to get some sample.  The next day we brought her to the doctor and we were still told we need to confine her as she barely drank the day before and her pee is not enough.  We stayed in a hospital room but her temperature kept dropping she was at 25 or 26 degrees already, the room was already warm still she was cold.

wrapped but temp isstill low

The next day we decided to let her stay in the NICU where nurses can watch her round the clock and she can be in an incubator where temperature is controlled, our pedia also told us that she wants Kite seen by a neo-natalogist (a specialist on newborn babies).  Oh I can still remember the fear inside us as doctors can’t pinpoint what was wrong with her, all test are negative but her behaviors showed sepsis. She was given antibiotics but it wasn’t working. They got urine to test, to culture, her blood too for test and they even performed a spinal tap on her to test and culture.  I clearly remember asking the neonatalogist if there is a chance we wont be able to bring our baby home alive. (Months before the son of our good friend passed away, it started with a simple fever caused by a heart problem and in a matter of weeks their baby was gone.) We can just watching her behind a glass window not allowed to be inside the room where her incubator/insolite was.  We got to touch her only when she started improving and was just allowed to touch her inside the incubator, cant hug nor kiss her 😦 Oh this is such horrible time for us, and add to that our savings were depleting! The day she was brought to the doctor was the day I stopped breastfeeding. My doctor actually said we can breastfeed even when she is in NICU we just stay at the corridor and the nurses will call us when she is hungry, but I didnt want to anymore. Breastfeeding drained me so much when we were still at home.  She was always crying at night and I would  jump off the bed to go to her which caused the first layer of my stitches to tear. (My OB ordered me to bathe already and she cant allow me to continue geh lai custom of not taking a bath para di pasukin ng lamig). I was mostly on auto pilot due to lack of sleep and add the anxiety over a sick baby, it was so taxing. So asking me to continue breastfeeding and staying in the corridor hospital was not an option for me.  Oh! Kite started improving after the 5th or 6th day (it was a rollercoaster 6 days) and we were able to bring her home after 10 days I think. Diagnosis was clinical sepsis, all test were negative but symptoms were all there so clinical sepsis lang siya di siya sepsis. We spent as much on this hospitalization as on my birthing. She was hospitalized from August 17-29,1999.

Now did I regret not pursuing breastfeeding when she was back from the hospital? No because I felt so free na. (But if this happened now with me having access to so much support I would pursue relactating. Or most likely I would be pumping while she was in the hospital anyway.) Had there been enough support group then I would have made it I think.

Also breastfeeding Kite was an added reason why I never went back to smoking. I smoke before getting pregnant and stopped during pregnancy, though I wasn’t itching to smoke after giving birth still it dawned on me while breastfeeding that I can’t smoke even if I wanted to when childcare was becoming stressful.

Do I think mas stronger ang bond namin ni Kite if I breastfed? I dont know but we are quite very very well bonded so no regret too. Do I feel she’d be healthier? That I cannot answer.

Did I breastfeed my next child? Hell Yes! 16 months and counting…

Where Am I?

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