6. Tell yourself today is not the day to give up
I can't tell you how many times I wanted to give up and say "Enough!, no more".
Especially when you start hearing people tell you that...
.. She might be crying because she is hungry - maybe your milk is too weak
.. She is not pooing because your milk is too diluted
.. She is waking up at night because your milk is not rich enough to sustain her through
.. She is cranky because your milk is not good enough
7. Try not to take negative comments personally
When you hear comments (like the above) about how your milk is weak and not rich enough for your baby, try not to take it personally.
I did and it resulted in some conflicts with people I loved. It really annoyed me at that point in time.. (and it still does annoy me to hear such comments).. but I've come to learn that they say it because they are genuinely concerned.. even if misguided. I often wish to tell them I've fed Little N for 4 months now and if there are really some problems with the milk, it would have showed.. But I have learnt to just nod, say "maybe" and then just move on with my day..
8. Trust God's design and nature
Breastmilk is the perfect food for your baby. It contains what your baby needs and is easily digested. So as long as your baby is gaining weight and wetting her diapers and her poo seems fine, trust God's design and don't worry too much.
I've read somewhere that most of the time, breastfeeding problems are not so much with the content (as in the milk) as with the delivery (poor latching, mothers timing baby's feed and delatching when "time's up"). And I believe it's true.
As long as you persevere, you and your baby will get the hang of it and soon, breastfeeding will become easier for both of you.
Of course, it doesn't hurt to see a lactation consultant for advice in the early days to ensure that you are both doing it properly. A friend told me that the 2 most important people in the first month after delivery are your pediatrician and the lactation consultant.. and that you should always have their numbers in your phone. She is quite right, I think.
9. Start before you deliver
Using nipple cream, that is.
For most mothers who choose to breast feed, soreness is one of the reasons to give up. I was lucky to have read this tip somewhere before I delivered and prevention is definitely better than cure, I must say.
10. Tell yourself you will miss this
Breastmilk is easily digestible and some say that's why the baby wakes up at night to feed.. Well, I'm not sure if that is true because formula fed babies seem to wake to feed too..
Whatever the case, when the baby wakes for the nth time at night for milk, tell yourself this is just a very small part of her life and you will miss this experience a few years down the road. Then enjoy the quietness of the night and the time with the baby.
Oh yes, it's difficult and I wish every night that she'd not wake for milk.. but I keep telling myself this will pass and I will miss this in future.. and it makes the night feedings a little easier..
Chewing her Sophie The Giraffe