For me and Ellie, who was born at term, kangaroo mother care worked to calm us both down and kick-start our breastfeeding journey. But for moms who don't have access to a hospital, it can take the place of a life-saving incubator. Kangaroo mother care can literally be the difference between life and death for a baby.
Excessive weight loss worries and an overly restrictive diet can cause heath problems for both you and your baby, interfere with maternal-infant bonding and disrupt the supply of breast milk. So, forget the crash diet and consider instead these 10 doctor- and mom-approved tips to getting your body back after baby.
Cracked nipples. Engorged breasts. Improper latches. Mastitis. Bites. Nursing on demand every two hours. Loss of independence. And now, judgmental stares and nasty comments. For most mothers, disapproval, from strangers is the least of our worries. We've given birth. We're enduring a level of sleep deprivation most would consider a form of torture. We're tough. We can handle it. But, why should we?
As much as I would love to spend a night in a yurt and eat off my own organic farm (preferably in a tropical location), I'm hardly an eco-hero, most of us aren't, even if we are making better choices and dedicating our time, work and efforts to caring and doing. BUT, there is a big difference between not being perfect, and being downright untruthful.
Nursing a baby in public is hard enough. But nursing a toddler is a whole other ball game. The disapproving stares. The negative comments. You've heard it all, right? You probably don't know many other mothers who breastfeed their babies beyond 6 months. Your friends and family may question you. And tell you it's strange to continue to nurse your toddler. But your little man loves nursing. He's vibrantly healthy. Emotionally secure. And you cherish it. It feels normal. Natural. So what should you do?
The last time I breastfed my first child, I bawled. Unbeknownst to my 13-month-old, I was about to disappear for several days, a last-resort measure to terminate a relationship that was marked by inadequate milk supply, sleepless nights, blocked ducts and metabolic chaos. She was frustrated, I was frustrated, I was losing more weight than was healthy and I had a job interview in a week. It was taking a huge toll on everyone. Heaving with sadness and guilt, I finally agreed to go cold-turkey.
By exaggerating the benefits of breastfeeding, we make it all too easy to cross the line from making a personal decision to breastfeed to the fervent belief that all mothers should breastfeed. If breastfeeding really will protect a baby from everything from diabetes to cancer, it's hard to avoid the conclusion that feeding a baby formula represents some kind of parental failure.