Updated: Nov 5, 2019
So as you know if you have read any of my previous posts that I am a breast feeding mum and proud as it was hard fought and won with my wee one. First she was early, no milk, then she was tongue tied, milk no suck, then it was painful, suck wholly fuck ! But we persevered with true grit on my part and encouraging words and helpful tips on my friends parts. Like nipple shields , changes of position , and hot flannels on erect nipples that won't go down ! And it has all been going well I am pleased to say , we have been demand feeding so there is no real schedule , dream feeding which has worked for both of us getting a good nights sleep and I even had enough to pump and donate so gold star for me !
But now I am entering solids territory and breast milk is not her end all and be all. Banana and yoghurt is. Trust me she can spot a yoghurt pot at 40 paces and zones in. She knows begrudgingly that she has to eat the other stuff first , but luckily we are early on and she is enjoying all the new taste and textures put forward, peanut butter toast and roasted squash , to steamed carrot sticks and orange juice flavoured baby rice. ( Im doing Baby led, or Lazy Baby Led as I call it ) with all this extra yummy food she is dropping feeds and it occurred to me , as my boobs are like watermelons , I was so crazed to get on the breastfeeding train , I forgot to look how do I get off or at least pump the brakes. How do I slow the flow. I was out swimming with a lady who had decided that 6 months was her limit and bubs was going on to solids and no more breast for her, I remember asking her how do you do that ? I meant physically not mentally and now I realised that the time is upon me it is both. I am hoping that it happens naturally , she eats more solids my body adapts to less feeds and we tootle along till it finishes.
Which on a side note is sad for me. As I said I was so determined to breast feed and dragged myself out of bed with 10 day old baby after a c section to a latch on meeting to get her tongue sorted that I don't want to give up! She maybe ready , but I am ? I worked so hard for this , I enjoy it so much and heck it is easier than bottles and or lugging along snacks in small wax wraps. I know I am being selfish , along the same lines as I don't want to put her in to her own room and Baby's firsts . This isn't about her at all , its about me !
I know that if needed there are ways to stop the flow, you just miss the feed and then pump it away, don't drain the breast as it will only refill, but the act not actually having a baby to suckle tells your body to stop. ( again to just mention how awesome our bodies are to work together like that to stop the flow )! To help with engorgement and or mastitis you can use cold cabbage leaves, yes trust me it works. Old wives tale is it helps with telling your body that it doesn't need as much and to slowing take your milk down. You can take a drug to dry up your milk. I worked for a lady who decided bf wasn't for her at all and took a drug immediately in the hospital. If you need to stop any of the above, it should take about 7 - 10 days to dry up and then you are good to go. Get your nice bras on again and reclaim your body. Although there will be residue and a hormone roller coaster rides for a far few months after
But nature and my baby will take its course, I hope to slow the flow rather than stop it as my wee one still needs fluids be with water, formula and or breast milk . I hope to keep going to around a year or till she bites me I guess, but we don't have teeth yet so I'm ok, although when they want they can do damage with gums ! Right now she is in the process of learning to chew and swallow with gums and doing ok. She having one bottle a night already , she is learning to take water from a sippy cup so I guess she is slowing her flow and doing what she wants to do. We both still love our morning feed in bed and snuggle so I guess I will still be breastfeeding a proud for a wee while longer ..... fingers crossed