Hands Free Breast Feeding

May 9, 2007 at 11:10 pm

I hosted a 3hours morning workshop for 7 days recently. I had to make sure speakers arrive on time, participants have no problem joining, Q&A are jotted down etc. Thank goodness for technology, they were all done through audio conference and virtual meeting room, making it possible for me to attend at home.

However, being the host and with all the coordinations to do (and all the problems related to logistic to solve), I have to be at my desk more than 3hours in the morning. What happened when Zaria needed her milk after her morning bath?

Thank goodness I invested in My Brest Friend, a nursing pillow which can be strepped around your waist.

My Brest Friend

This is my best friend.

I know I shouldn’t do this hands free, but when worn while seated close to the table, it prevented her from rolling down from the other end of the pillow. Now with this, I could feed Zaria hands free, still able to do my typing, notes taking, talking.
My Brest Friend

(oh boy, doesn’t this sound like a PPP/sponsored post? Unfortunately it’s not.)

Breastfeeding – The Ugly side

April 26, 2007 at 10:51 pm

I’m pro-breast feeding, I know there are lots of benefit for the mums (reduce risk in breast cancer, getting back in shape faster, savings on future medical expenses etc) and the babies (better immunity, better DHA absorption). I enjoy feeding the kids, the way they look at you when they suckle, the smile they give you after they are full. The most satisfying feeling I have is knowing I’m the nutrient provider for my kids, I’m in control! For Zara I did it until I was conceived with Zaria, i.e. when Zara was 18months. And with Zaria, I plan to at least do it for 1 year, and see how we go from there.

Zaria Feeding

As much as I enjoy it, it’s not all rosy though. Here is the ugly side which I experienced. (Potential breast feeding mums out there, you know you are not alone if you too experienced this when you start breast feeding your kids)

1) Painful nipples for the first few days – Some people stop breast feeding because of the pain. I thought it would be better the 2nd round, but since I’d stopped for 6months before Zaria arrived, the nipples got tender again. I had to bite my lips and endure the pain, and I could see the layer of skin coming off, sometimes pieces of them found in Zaria’s lips. Blech.
Luckily, it was only for 2, 3 days and the nipples ‘toughened’.

2) Rock hard super big breasts – I don’t mind being super big (think 2 cup size increase the least), but when you get an engorgement, fuyoh, the breasts become rock hard (and of course big) and pretty uncomfortable until they are emptied! After Zaria drank from one side, I can see my 2 obviously different size breasts, a funny sight!

3) Block Ducts – Hate it, but it happens sometimes. I have to put warm AND cold compress on the breast, massage it, COMB it (supposed to unblock the duct). Daddy won’t help to un-clog it, but he wouldn’t mind bringing the warm and cold towels.

3) Breast leak – I used reusable breast pads for economic reasons (disposable pads per pair are more expensive than a piece of Mami Poko diaper!). When Zaria feeds, and let down happens, the other breast will start to leak big time. My breast pad can’t hold the milk, and it sips through the bra and I get a wet patch on my top. Oh boy, not a pretty sight especially when I’m out.

Sometimes in the night, the breasts get so engorged that they start to leak even though there’s no feeding taking place. I wake up feeling a cold draft on my chest, caused by a big wet patch; and I get milk stain on my bed sheets and bolster. The room smells of milk!

4) Can’t be away from the baby too long – We sometimes leave Zaria at home and go out with just Zara in tow. Maybe this is a good thing, I can’t be away from Zaria for more than 6 hours (i.e. 2 feeds). If we do go out, I have to pump before we leave the house, and pump again immediately after I get home. If we leave her longer than that, my breast will get engorged and uncomfortable, and I can’t pump when I get home as it’s too near Zaria’s next feeding time (or she’ll not have enough to drink during her feed).

5) Pump and Pump and Pump – I like to direct feed more than pumping out. But if we need to go out, or if I need to go to the office, I have to pump. I hate it more when I come back from an outing, no matter how tired and sleepy and late, I have to pump; just so the bottle of milk taken can be replenished (and also to maintain supply). Zzzzzzzz.

And have you seen the nursing clothes available in Malaysia? Totally utterly ugly! So I just wear normal clothes and when I have to breast feed in public, I’ll cover myself with a nursing cape.

Delicious Milk

April 5, 2007 at 3:25 pm

You know your milk is delicious when :

1) Your baby drinks it up with no complain
2) Your fussy toddler (with acute sense of taste) waits by the side when baby is drinking the milk from a bottle and excitedly says, “Meimei, you don’t want huh? Cannot finish huh? Faster give jiejie drink then.”
3) Whatever your baby can’t finish (from the bottle), you toddler grabs it and happily empties the bottle, exclaiming, “Yummy” or “So nice” at the end of it
4) Your toddler occasionally cries and asks to be fed from the breast. When you tell her she’s already a big girl, she replies, “I’m only a baby, I want to drink from mummy’s breast.”

And if you want to know, nope, I didn’t let the toddler feed from the breast.

Short Take – Back to Work

April 3, 2007 at 1:31 pm

The kids were still sleeping at 9:45am! Not being awaken. I asked Tuyam, “Kalau mereka tidur sampai 12pm, you biar kan saja lar?” (Malay : If they slept till 12pm, you’ll leave them sleeping?)

My boss commented, Full time mum and you have a part time job eh?” when I had my 1 on 1 with him. Apparently he read this post  “=.=

Zara was so happy to see me home yesterday, she wanted to sit on my lap while I had dinner, and kept stroking my face. I was away from her for 10hours (the last I was away this long, it was when I went for my biz trip in Jul ’06).

Zaria refused to drink milk from the bottle and cried every time the bottle was placed in her mouth. She took less than 4oz while I was at work. She preferred to go hungry, and waited for me. She drank hungrily when I offered her the breast when I got home. =.=”

Work?? Pile high! 3000mails and every thing is urgent!! Well.. almost.
There’s also this new program, which I have little knowledge of and I have to pick it up and run!

Whooosh – Maternity Leave Is Over!!

March 30, 2007 at 11:09 am

How time flies, my 3 months maternity leave came and went, WHOOOOSH…. just like that.

So how did I spend my time at home these 3 months? What have I achieved?

I moved to wordpress, did some blogging, watched a few DVDs, read a couple of books. I looked after the girls (bathed them daily & fed them),  brought them out couple of times in a week, played with them at home, brought them to the park every evening etc.

Books and Movies

Books read and movies watched

Achievements :
~ Toilet trained Zara. She tells us when she wants to poo and pee, and with our help, do it on the toilet bowl. We only let her wear her diaper when we go out (just in case we can’t find a toilet) and in the night for ‘accidents’ (but she wakes me up when she needs to go to the toilet in the middle of the night and never wet her diaper the last 2 months)
~ Almost back to my pre-pregnancy weight, 2Kg more to go
~ Successfully breast fed Zaria exclusively (except the time she was in hospital for jaundice she had to be supplemented since I didn’t have milk stored)
~ Stock up on breast milk : 100oz (close to 3 litres) of frozen milk, almost enough for Zaria’s 5 days feed, just in case I have to go for any business trips.
~ Hired and trained a new maid

KLCC Water Park

Play time – KLCC Water Park


Play time – Kidzsports


Play time – Park


Watched Her Grow

On Monday, it’ll be BACK TO WORK. Bummer!

Breast Feeding Zaria

January 23, 2007 at 6:11 pm

It’s nice to see that Zaria is getting a bit chubby, and I feel proud knowing that all this was the result of her drinking the milk I produced.

She latched on well since day one which makes breastfeeding her easy. She now drinks 3 to 4 hourly, and I think she should be drinking about 3oz. In the day, when she wants milk, she’ll just give us a shout (yeah, a shout, like “Ehhhh”); and in the night (she probably knows this since the room is dark), she only makes the “Eh Ugh” sound or shuffles in her sleep when it’s time for her feed. Once she ‘informs’ us she wants her milk, she patiently awaits for us to feed her. What a nice baby she is.

She’s now nick named Chubby Cheeks at home.

Chubby Cheeks

Chubby Cheeks

Chubby Cheeks asleep

~~~~~~~~~~~ . ~~~~~~~~~~~

Since Zara only weaned off from the breast at 18 months, she remembers those breast feeding days. I initially thought I will probably need to do tandem feeding when Zaria was born, but she was proud to have been ‘promoted’ to jiejie, and she thinks only babies drink from breast.

On the first night after we were back from the hospital, I was feeding Zaria, and realised that it’s also milk time for Zara. I asked “Zara, you want milk?” (actually asking if she wanted me to make her milk for her). She looked at me with this funny expression, and pointed to her teeth, “Zara got teeth already, cannot drink milk from the breast.” :-I

There are other times when she proudly says, “Mei mei baby, drink milk from mummy’s breast. Zara jiejie already, drink bottle milk only.” or “Last time Zara baby, Zara drink breast milk, now Zara big girl already, drink milk from bottle only”

She’s so proud to be all big and grown up now. 😛

Naughty Daddy & Cheeky Zara

April 19, 2006 at 11:36 pm

Last weekend, when it was bed time, Zara as usual asked for, “milk milk”. Daddy and I were both on the bed playing with Zara just a while back. Daddy decided to be naughty. He lifted up his t-shirt, exposing his chest, and said, “Nah, Zara, drink milk milk.”

Zara had this very amused smile on her face. She shook her head vigorously and said, “Don’t want.” Then turned to look at me, “Mummy, milk milk.”

Daddy moved his chest closer to Zara, told her, “Daddy also got milk milk. Come and have milk milk.”

Zara still smiling, looked at Daddy’s chest, shook her head and retreated a few pace, “Don’t want.” Looked at me, and said in a louder tone, “MUMMY, milk milk!”

Seeing the two of them like that, I actually had tears in my eyes, trying to stifle a laugh.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ . ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

(This happened a month back)

Zara was playing in the room, and then Daddy came out from the shower butt naked. Zara spotted something she didn’t have.

She stood up, went closer to look at IT. Then decided to touch IT. Instead of using her hand, she went to her toiletry box, took out a tube of diaper cream, walked back to daddy, and use the tube of cream to lift IT up and then had a closer examination of IT. She then giggled out loud.

I was rolling on my bed laughing. Funny why she went to search for a tool to flick IT instead of using her hands.

Pumping Days are Numbered

April 3, 2006 at 7:03 pm

I’m into my 17th month of breastfeeding now, I wonder how long more I’ll go on, but it seems the days are numbered because my supply is getting low.

One of the reason why I could continue for so long is due to the facilities we have in our company (some credits have to be given to my understanding male bosses too). Some pro-breast feeding mums have persuaded the company and 2 rooms have been allocated for nursing mums, with a fridge too to store our supplies, long before Zara was born.

I have used these rooms for 14months now (1st 3 months at home enjoying my maternity leave). This is where I met Two Little Fellas, and some other nursing mothers; separated by a thin wall, we exchanged breastfeeding and parenting tips

On months when we have lots of new mummies who’d just returned from maternity leave, the rooms are occupied most of the times (sometimes a queue is formed). After a while, a new ‘user’ settles into a pattern, and chooses a time she prefers, or to meet up with a particular mum so that she has someone to chat to while ‘doing her business’.

I’m currently the mum with the oldest kid still using the room (too bad there’s no trophies for this one). One by one I see mummies dropping off, and they asked me when it will be my turn to stop (oh, Daddy asked me the same question too). I don’t know, maybe when Zara is 18 months or 2yrs old? Or when I get pregnant again? Or I have so little supply it’s not worth expressing anymore?? Which ever comes first.

From 3 times a day in the beginning, I now settle with once a day starting of this year. At 4pm, with a good pump, a good book, 30minutes later, I emerge with 1 of Zara’s feed for the following day.

All About Milk

February 8, 2006 at 7:08 pm

1) In the midst of Weaning
She started taking 1 bottle of formula each day. She’s no longer complaining. Happily takes it, even if I was the one offering compared to the previous months.
Not sure when she’s going to be completely weaned off breast feeding, but it is definitely in progress (I guess it’s more of mummy not willing to stop than her).

2) Bottle or Breast
She has a choice now, especially during the days when I’m around.
When she asked for Milk Milk (she no longer said “HUH, HUH” like she used to), I would ask her, “Zara want breast or bottle?”
In most cases, she’ll say, “Best” (breast), and points to my breast

3) Frustrated
One day I had a block duct on my left breast. Since I wanted her to help me clear the blockage, during her feed, I kept only offering that breast (for those who’s not familiar with breast feeding, normally you swap breast mid feed so the baby gets to have a fuller feed) which was my weaker breast (less milk).
She sucked, then stopped. Looked at me, “milk milk!”.
The duct didn’t clear yet, so I told her, “yeah, Zara suck suck then” and stuffed the breast back to her mouth.
She sucked, then stopped and said “milk, milk!” again.
The duct didn’t clear, so I guess she was getting very little milk.
She did this one more time. Finally, she stopped and looked at me, “Bottle!”
She was frustrated, all the sucking and no milk. Ha, she opted for the bottle instead!

4) Habis (Malay: Finished)
I fed her a bottle of formula on Sunday. After taking half the bottle, she sat up, took the cap of the bottle, cap back the bottle and said, “habis!”
Guess where she picks up that word from.

5) Excited over the breast
Since it’s CNY, we eat out a lot (some how some one would be buying dinner or it was our turn to buy). At about 10pm, Zara would want her milk fix.
She would then suck her thumb, lay her head on my chest, and said, “milk milk”
If I can’t find a place to feed her, she would then grope my breast, follow by a louder, “milk milk”.
If I still don’t feed her, she would try to reach her hand into my blouse to get to my breast.
All these in public.
My solution, hand her to daddy. 😛

Introducing Formula

December 28, 2005 at 11:59 pm

I’m in the process of trying to wean Zara off breastfeeding. For her 1st year, the only milk she’d taken was just breast milk; except on the occasion when I was away for a week on business trip in May, and I didn’t have enough stocked up for her consumption.

To start off, I tried to introduce her to formula on days when my milk supply was low. I got Tuyam to supplement her with 1 or 2 oz of formula (Enfalac) after she’d taken the expressed breast milk. According to Tuyam, she had tossed the bottle away in anger when she tasted the milk to be different, refusing to take any, and survived on whatever I could provide (i.e. 3oz on some days per feed).

Zara does have discerning taste. I’d tried the formula myself, and I find that it’s absolutely yucky. Very strong iron taste, and so fake (chemical taste). I’m one who would like to know the taste of the food I put into Zara’s mouth, so I’d also tasted my own breast milk. I have to say the taste of breastmilk is absolutely heavenly, it’s creamy but with the right consistency and with a hint of sweetness. It’s not something I can describe, you have to taste it yourself to know what I mean, but I know most would just turn their noses the other way even if it was something you produced (the husbands too would probably not want to taste their wives’ milk).

The other day, I got a pack of of Enfagrow A+ (Honey) sample, and I thought this would probably taste better than the Enfalac. So I got Tuyam to start giving Zara some on days where I could only express less than 4oz per feed. Zara took this better than the Enfalac, according to Tuyam, which is good.

Today, while at home, Zara has been coming to me every 2 hours and asking for milk. “Huh Huh (her pronunciation for ‘milk milk’)! Huh Huh!” she had her head on my chest. One of my breasts was bitten by her 2 days back, and there’s actually a cut, every time she nursed I had to bite my lips and endure the pain, as one of her teeth would just sink right into the wound, the feeling is exactly like rubbing salt to a wound. *ouch* I cringed every time she wanted to nurse.

When she asked for her 4th feed at lunch time, I just told her, “Mummy no more milk milk, you want bottle?” just to test the water. She didn’t shake her head, but instead started chanting “Bottle! Bottle!” I quickly got Tuyam to sterilise her bottle and made her 2oz of formula, and then went into hiding. After 5 minutes, Tuyam came to tell me she’d finished the milk.

After lunch, she again came to me for milk (another cringe). I asked her if she wanted the bottle? Again, she didn’t shake her head. This time, I made the formula instead, and tried feeding her, but she wouldn’t take it from me. She just pushed the teat out every time I placed it in her mouth. After a few tries and she didn’t suck on the bottle, I got Tuyam to feed her instead, and I sat next to them. She refused to take, and gave me that sheepish smile. I thought maybe I should again go into hiding. After Tuyam assured her a few times that I wasn’t around and with her sticking out her head to scan the living room to confirm I wasn’t around, she started sucking on the teat, and took another 2oz.

When I reappeared after she’d finished, she again had this sheepish smile, as though feeling embarrassed that she’d taken formula milk. Maybe she was worried it would hurt my feelings.

After this feed, the bottle trick won’t work any more. Every time she wanted her feed and I said “you want bottle?” She just shook her head and started groping for my breasts. So I couldn’t put off nursing her any longer, and just have to endure the pain *frown*, again, and again, and again(3 more feeds till she slept *ouch*).

On a happier note, I’m glad she’d started accepting formula, which means I could slowly wean her off now. This is my first step. The 2nd step is to prepare myself emotionally. Breastfeeding is a bond I have with her, will I be able to cope when we no longer share this bond?

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