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4 Reasons We Love Baby Led Weaning

September 3, 2015

Imagine you lived long long ago, as a cave woman.

You also had a little cave baby who recently began to show an interest in food in addition to the wonderful and exclusive breastmilk you had supplied up to that point.

So what would you do?

Drive down to Target, wander down aisle three, and grab the pureed cave baby food in neatly stacked jars and pouches?

No. You did not do that.

What you did was give your baby real food. And that, my friends, is at the heart of Baby Led Weaning (BLW).

Here in this post I want to discuss what BLW is, how to know if your baby is ready for it, and 4 reasons we LOVE it for our family.

baby led weaning

 

First things first, let’s clarify what we mean by “weaning” so as not to scare you prematurely.

Many people think of weaning as the end of breastfeeding (or formula if you use it), but in actuality, weaning simply refers to the beginning of the introduction of foods beyond milk. So when baby has her first taste of solid food, the weaning process has begun.The World Health Organization recommends that babies are breastfed up to two years and beyond. Josie and I are still going strong nearly 10 months into our breastfeeding journey and we have no plans to stop anytime soon despite the fact that she eats real food.

So, What Is Baby Led Weaning?

It is simply allowing the baby to eat table food on his own timetable and of his own volition. It doesn’t involve spoon-feeding pureed homemade foods into his mouth (there are exceptions like yogurt and oatmeal…at least until they learn how to use a spoon), and it doesn’t involve weirdly colored mixtures in a jar from a store. It is intentionally respectful to his personhood and his choices.

It goes a little something like this:

Make dinner. Serve the family. Place a bit on baby’s tray. Watch him explore and enjoy. If he likes, he will eat it. If not, he won’t. The end.

4 Reasons We Love Baby Led Weaning

1. Simple McSimpleson

Guess what I don’t have time for?

Buying baby food.

Puree-ing my own baby food.

Meal-time battles over getting baby to eat baby food.

Finally getting to eat my (now cold) meal when baby has finished said baby food.

In BLW, the baby explores and feeds himself while you eat your own food. You simply prepare the meal you were going to eat anyway, but place some of that food on the baby’s tray and let them have at it.

Sure, this can get messy, but that is why bibs and wash clothes exist. Oh and if you want the lazy man’s clean up, try getting a dog.

2. Helps build appreciate for a wide variety of textures, shapes, colors, and tastes.

One of the reasons we chose BLW in the beginning was because we don’t want to battle a picky eater down the road. Baby Led Weaning exposes the baby to lots of diversity and texture early on, creating less pickiness in the long run.

Josie’s first meal was lox and capers. She LOVED it and we want to encourage a bold and varied palate. Ain’t nobody got time to make Mac N Cheese everyday.

BLW also allows baby to decide when he is full, helping him develop a healthy sense of satiety.

Many studies have actually found that forcing a child to finish their plate no matter what can contribute to over-eating habits later in life, from not being allowed to develop and listen to their own sense of when they’ve had enough.

3. It Keeps Us Healthy

Jonathan and I prefer to follow the raw food philosophy of eating food in its natural form as much as possible, without adulteration or factory processing.

Key word there is….prefer.

We don’t always do it and there are times when we are tempted to eat something super unhealthy. By doing BLW, it gaurantees that at least SOMETHING at every meal will be healthful. Our goal is for the entire meal to be healthy for all but sometimes we just need to clog our arteries or send our insulin levels through the roof…but at least we serve veggies for Josie on the side now! 🙂

4. Promotes Hand-Eye Coordination and Chewing

Babies who are allowed to practice baby-led weaning are likely to more easily develop hand-eye coordination, and be able to be self-sufficient in feeding fairly quickly.

Josie was given her first taste of food on Mother’s Day, which happened to be the date she turned 6 months old. Sure, that first attempt she grabbed food and attempted to get it into her mouth but missed and put it in her eye. But within a week or two she had the technique down. She’s an old pro at pinching/sweeping up food and getting it into her mouth. Soon enough she will be using her own spoon and fork to feed herself at mealtimes.

Babies who do BLW aslo learn how to chew BEFORE they learn how to swallow. When they are given purees it’s the opposite, which is why babies only given purees are actually more likely to choke. I know many are afraid of choking in BLW but really there is a HUGE distinction between choking and gagging.

In babies the gagging reflex is triggered very far forward on the tongue vs in adults where the gag response is triggered near the back of the tongue. So if baby takes a bite that is too large to swallow, they will gag and work it out. The chunk of food ends up being spit out and baby learns to take smaller bites in time. You should stay calm if the baby begins to gag, turn red, or get watery eyes. They will work it out. Now, if baby doesn’t make ANY sound or turns blue, then you need to perform basic first aid measures to remove the blockage.

Tips and Tricks
  • Never leave a baby unattended with food.
  • Read the book “Baby Led Weaning” or take a class before getting started.
  • Join the FB Group for Baby Led Weaning to ask questions and get support.
  • Embrace the mess. Baby playing with food and exploring it helps build a positive relationship with eating later in life.
  • All babies have different appetites. Some will eat a lot straight away (Josie) and others will just play for months before eating.
  • Avoid choking hazards, like nuts and seeds. Oh, and no honey until after a year.
  • There is no need to cut food into tiny little portions. Babies grabbing chunks of food like a chicken leg or a whole strawberry and gumming off pieces is half the fun.
  • It’s recommended that Baby Lead Weaning wait until baby can sit up on their own, express an interest in food, be able to feed themselves, and be at least 6 months in age.

So what are you waiting for?

Set the table (and throw some chunks on baby’s highchair tray) and let the fun begin!

Parenting

Are Cloth Diapers Still Worth It?

August 7, 2015

We’re nearly 9 months into our cloth diapering journey and the question has been asked…

Are cloth diapers still worth it?

I wrote about cloth dipes early on in Josie’s life.  Basically we chose to cloth diaper because it’s economical, environmentally friendly, and mega cute.

Those are wonderful motivations, right? But, Amanda, tell me like it is. What are the downsides?

Well I am here to tell you what I’ve found to be the tricky spots of cloth diapering.

1. Never Ending Laundry

Every 2-3 days I run a cloth diaper load in my washer. First, I do a cold wash with a little Tide powder to shake the ickies off. It’s followed by a hot wash with a cold rinse and LOTS of Tide powder to make sure my dipes get squeaky clean. Then it’s off to the dryer on low. Finally, once they’ve cooled I sit down with an episode of Grey’s Anatomy (gasp!) and have a diaper stuffing party with myself while Josie plays nearby.

It feels like I do a lot of laundry but if I am being honest, I kind of like doing the monotonous work of stuffing. Probably only because it means I get ten minutes to watch my shows in peace. All in all, laundry is not as big a negative as I thought it would be.

Still worth it? You betcha.

2. Leaking

All brands of cloth diapers will eventually leak if they get over saturated or if you don’t properly fit them to your baby’s unique body shape. This can be a pain because the baby is constantly growing and there is a learning curve with how to fit a cloth diaper to those little legs. They also reach saturation point much quicker than disposable diapers. Like much much quicker. So you have to change the baby way more often to prevent leaking.

I will say that Josie has been known to leak #2 out of disposables on a consistent basis. She’s only ever leaked #1 from a cloth diaper so that’s a win for cloth in my mind.

Now that we’ve got our learning curve down and I know how to fit them to her body AND I know how often I need to change her, we’ve gotten into a routine that more or less prevents the dreaded leaks. It still happens on occassion but we typically have a spare outfit with us so it’s no big deal.

Still worth it? Yup.

3. Starting Solids

For the first 6 months of Josephine’s life, she was exclusively breast fed. That means all her poo was organic material that could be dissolved and washed off in the washing machine. I didn’t have to do anything to remove it before hand. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy.

But then she started solids…and this nearly broke cloth diapering for this Momma.

All of a sudden their poop begins to take shape when solids are introduced. And it’s no longer OK to simply throw it in the washer to dissolve. It must be removed.

AGH!!

This has to be the worst part of cloth for me. Most of the time her poo has been “plop-able” from diaper to toilet which isn’t that hard. But every now and again it’s “peanut-buttery” poo and I have to use the dreaded diaper sprayer to remove it. Let’s spare y’all the details but I have ended up with a poo and water splattered bathroom on many occasions due to my steep learning curve with the sprayer. Ugh.

I am getting smart though. I bought a pair of gloves to wear while I spray. I also purchased the Spray Pal to contain my spraying power. I’m also just getting better and my Rookie mistakes from the early days are becoming a distant memory.

Still worth it? Oh yea.

This summer Josie actually spent about 6 weeks in sposies while we traveled. Sure, they were convenient because I could just throw them out when I was done with them and they had a stripe in the middle that revealed when she was wet, but when it was time to go back to cloth I was actually relieved. I was glad to be back in our routine with cloth and most of all I was so happy to no longer have to budget for diapers any longer. Disposables are PRICEY y’all!

As you can see, there are legitimate cons to cloth diapering but at the end of the day, they are still worth it to me! 🙂

Parenting

Our Nursing Redemption: The Final Chapter

April 17, 2015

I am so glad to FINALLY be writing this post…because it means that things with nursing between Josie and I are going well!

Many of you have joined me in this journey back when I revealed our initial nursing battles.

Then I had your support and continued encouragement when I posted about further complications but glimpses of light at the end of the tunnel.

Well here I am today with a final blog post…the one we’ve all been waiting for.

This is the chapter in our nursing journey where I tell you that things with Josie and I have taken a turn for the best.

Where I celebrate the fact that I finally built a FULL SUPPLY! Where we gush about how chunky my little monkey is getting from my hard and fought for milk! Where we throw a blogosphere PAR-TAY for our nursing success!

I did it.

I actually did it.

I am still in awe because those days when nursing was going badly are still oh so fresh in my mind. The days where I was curled up in the fetal position crying to Jonathan that I couldn’t nurse Josie ever again lest I have a panic attack. The days we fought nursing strikes, under-supply,  supplemental nursing systems, lip and tongue ties, and dairy intolerance.

My have things changed.

In the beginning I could only nurse using the Boppy and my Lact-Aid while sitting in one specific chair in Josie’s bedroom.

Now? We’ve nursed any and everywhere. In the Costco parking lot, at the Cubs game, during Mass, while hiking in the baby carrier…you name it. We’re not only having success with nursing, we are finally tasting the freedom it can bring with its flexibility and ability to happen on the go. I was getting good at toting around our Lact-Aid and using it publicly, but it’s so nice to leave it at home and not worry about supplementing any longer.

Thank you to everyone who supported our journey. Thank you for all you mommas who shared your struggles too, letting me know that we are not alone in experiencing breastfeeding challenges. Thank you for your encouragement to persevere or simply to do whatever we needed to do to stay sane and keep the baby fed. I’m grateful for all you cheerleaders out there who’ve been rooting for us! 🙂

Now the only thing I worry about is the day Josie wants to wean. I get sad even thinking about it but I will keep enjoying our nursing sessions for as long as we possibly can. Maybe we’ll make it a year, or two, or even four…I can’t say for sure but I hope to keep sharing this special bond with my girl as long as she wants.

Now, to end this post, lets see some pics of my little chunk, weighing in at close to 15 pounds these days…almost double her birth weight!

BeFunky Collage

Adoption, Parenting

The Nursing Saga Continues: Two Steps Forward and One Step Back

February 11, 2015

I got an overwhelming amount of supportive responses from my first nursing blog post and thought it was time for an update.

Sorry again, fellas.

Where did we leave off last time?

Oh yes, things were looking up, as I was making around 11 ounces a day which was much more than when she was a newborn.

I am happy to say that my supply has continued to increase!

What supplements have I maintained or added to help?

  • Domperidone 160 mg/day
  • Moringa 2 tsps twice a day
  • Shatavari twice daily
  • Brewer’s Yeast every few days mixed in with a protein shake
  • Goat’s Rue 3 pills/day
  • Gaia Lactation Blend 3 pills/day
  • Drinking 90-100 ounces of water/day
  • Breast compressions while I nurse
  • Occasional evening power pump session
  • Occasional 5-10 minute pump session after feeding her
  • Offering to nurse every 2-3 hours during the day

It’s gone up by close to an ounce a week and I am currently sitting around 16-17 ounces per day with high hopes of being able to build a full supply of what Miss Josie needs in the next month or two. That’s a HUGE accomplishment and I am so proud of the ladies! Now, it will have taken me 3-4 months to build that full supply and a bio mom can do it in 3-4 days but hey, who’s counting?

In early January we traveled for about a week to the FOCUS SEEK Conference. I was super nervous about how nursing would go at a conference with 10,000 people present. Where would I nurse her? How would I manage the LactAid device underneath the stupid nursing cover? How would we travel with donor milk and keep it frozen?

The stars aligned and believe it or not we had a fantastic nursing experience. The front desk stored our donor milk in a freezer and we just went down to take out a few ounces here and there when we needed it. Josie nursed really well no matter where we were – in our room, at a talk, sitting in a bathroom, at a pub, during mass, you name it we nursed there.

Amazingly, a majority of the time I didn’t even use the LactAid. I saved those feeds for the evening when we were in the convenience of our hotel room. So that means Josie nursed with MY supply only for most of the day! And she was content and happy! And even gained weight! WAHOO! 🙂

I couldn’t have been happier with how things were going.

And then when we got home…we had her upper lip tie and tongue ties evaluated by a Pediatric Dentist. He recommended getting them lasered for Josie’s sake – speech, feeding, and oral development are all things that could be compromised by these ties. He said it would also help our nursing issues like my nipple vasospasms and her weak suck.

One week later we had the ties lasered and all hell broke loose.

It was literally torture to watch them hold her down and laser the ties, even though I knew she was numbed up. Josie is just not a gal who likes anyone prying into her mouth and despite being a very laid back baby most of the time, she has STRONG likes and dislikes. I am nearly certain she is partly choleric and prodding in her mouth is a strong dislike. She screamed while they did the ties…so hard that her little head was sweating when I was allowed to pick her back up. She instantly soothed in my arms and I was so glad we were able to be there in the room to comfort her.

We were told she’d be in pain for maybe a day and to just give a little Tylenol.

Yea right.

It was obvious Josie was in a LOT of pain despite Tylenol around the clock. She went on a nursing strike and was refusing to latch again due to the pain. I was back to pumping and using the LactAid 100% of the time, bottle, or syringe to feed her depending on what she would accept at the time. It was truly exhausting.

We also had to stretch the tongue and lip out every 3-4 hours a day for 10 days….which she did NOT like in the slightest. I felt horrible doing it since she screamed through most feedings and then screamed through the stretches too. It was obvious to me at 5 days post procedure that something wasn’t right.

We went back to the dentist and he said her tissues looked inflamed so he had to do Bio-Stimulation laser therapy to help speed along the healing process. Finally things started going better. She was latching again and each time I could tell her suck was getting stronger as she learned new freedoms with her now mobile tongue and lip.

Just as things with her latch began to really take off in a positive direction, all of a sudden she was stricken with extreme gas pains. It wasn’t just usual infant gas. She would pass gas normally during the day. These were like attacks. They would happy around feeding time in the evening and she could’t stop screaming until we helped her pump the gas out using the bicycle leg tactic. This usually took 5-10 minutes and then she’d be able to eat.

Then we started noticing mucous in her stool. AGH!

After researching a variety of things, we think she may have a dairy allergy. So I’ve been cutting dairy out of my diet and from the house. Thankfully we have quite of bit of dairy free donor milk to use while we experiment with this. So far her gas attacks seem to have subsided completely minus the middle of the night gas attack after I ate of bowl of ice cream last week. Whoops! It only confirmed my suspicions even further.

With the nursing strike, nipple pain, suck issues, and allergies behind us…nursing began going REALLY well again. We’re in a groove where my supply is building yet again and Josie’s gaining weight. We still supplement a few feeds a day but a majority of the time she nurses just with my supply and I love those times the most! 🙂

Now…we peeked in her mouth the other day to check on her healing and it appears as if her ties reattached. 🙁

I am literally infuriated as the dentist told me this only happens 1-2% of the time. We go in Thursday February 12th to check and possibly have them re-lasered. I am pretty much against getting it redone since I CAN’T do another 2 weeks of pain, screaming, and nursing strikes. We JUST overcame all of that.

But I also want her to be healed. Being a mom is so hard in these situations where you are weighing choices like this!

So if you can join us in prayer along with Our Lady of La Leche before noon on Thursday (MST) I would MUCH appreciate it. We need wisdom as we are clueless as to what our decision will be on Thursday if the doctor says we ought to re-laser.

Thanks again for everyone’s encouragement and support! We’ve encountered and conquered a LOT of nursing issues in a short 3 months but I am still glad we pursued this journey. I am confident that one day…I will get to write a third post about our nursing relationship and it will be one of redemption and victory!

la leche

Our Lady of La Leche, pray for us.

Adoption, Parenting

Nursing Josie: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

December 22, 2014

After my last post on How and Why I Induced Lactation, I got a lot of questions as to how it’s going. So, for those who asked (and anyone else who’s interested) here’s the rest of the story.

Before I get into the details, I have to commend ALL breastfeeding moms out there. Breastfeeding is NOT for the faint of heart. It’s hands down been the most difficult and emotional thing I have ever done.

We’ve had some major challenges and victories along the way. It’s been a journey of highs and lows and I want to be very real about that with our readers, especially those considering lactation induction. There have been days I have doubted why I ever induced lactation and if I made the wrong decision because of how hard this is. There are other days when I am confident this was a good decision and we reach a new milestone or have a breakthrough.

And round and round the merry-go-round we’ve gone.

Here’s we go:

Josephine was born November 10th, 2014. Her birth mother (Tiffany) and I planned to tandem nurse her in the hospital for two reasons –

1. I could continue maintaining supply and get nursing practice

2. Josie could fill up on colostrum with Tiffany, getting all those awesome health benefits

Before Josephine was born, my max production in any given day was between 7-8 ounces of pumped milk. I knew this would be enough for her the first couple days of life when her tummy was oh so tiny but I was nervous about what my supply would do after she was born.

I had many women telling me things like:

“That baby will bring your milk in with a vengeance.”

“The baby will be far more efficient than the pump.”

“Your supply will just grow with what the baby needs.”

Granted none of those women had induced lactation. They’d given birth and had 9 months to prepare their breast tissue for this “surge of milk supply” that they thought was coming my way upon the baby’s arrival.

God bless their naive little hearts.

While supply worries were on the back burner in the hospital, my anxiety quickly shifted to the nipple blisters I was getting from Josie. A nurse came and gave me some instructions on how to “sandwich” my breast to help Josie get a deeper latch. Once I figured out how to hold her with one hand and sandwich my boob with the other, the pinching sensation and blistering went away. Whew!

We left the hospital and things were going pretty well until day 5 hit.

That night Josie woke up to nurse every hour…and it would take her 30 minutes to eat. That meant that by the time we laid her back down and fell back asleep ourselves, she would be up crying and wanting to nurse again 15 minutes later. It was the longest night of our lives.

The next morning I was going crazy with sleep deprivation. I just wanted her to stop crying and my gut said that she was hungry despite all this nursing. I busted my pump out and hooked it up…to find nothing on tap at the milk bar. I was empty and this wasn’t news to Josie. She was angry and frustrated. Even placing her in the nursing position caused her to arch her back, fighting to get away from my breasts.

In our frustration, we bottled up some pumped breast milk from previous days and gave her a couple ounces. She sucked it down like a starving child and slept peacefully for 3 hours.

Enter Satan and his lies creeping in:

“She hates nursing since you aren’t her “real” mom.”

“Why did you even induce lactation? You won’t be able to do this.”

“You can’t have babies and you can’t even nurse babies. Your body is broken and unable to function.”

Every negative emotion you can think of was swarming my mind. Guilt. Envy. Fear. Anxiety.

I was a hot mess and Jonathan was at the receiving end of my wrath. I was like a caged animal who was unpredictable and looked ready to snap at any given moment in time. Of course all this anxiety was leading me into depression and my supply started to tank. Since Josie was on a nursing strike and refusing to latch, I had to start bottle feeding her formula since I couldn’t pump enough for her needs.

I turned to my Adoptive Breastfeeding Facebook group for support and decided to try using the LactAid supplemental nursing system to begin supplementing instead of using the bottle. Sometimes she would accept it at the breast and sometimes we would have to tape the tube to our pinky finger to feed her that way. I also learned that it’s incredibly RARE to get a full supply if you didn’t give birth before and if I am to get a full supply, it will take time. Like months. Not the days I was promised by other nursing moms.

Around this time is when I started cussing again. I haven’t really cussed consistently in about a decade…until I started hitting nursing issues. Every swear word has made it’s way back into my vocabulary. I am not happy to admit it but when you combine zero sleep, a screaming baby, and my cave woman’s desire to feed my baby and inability to do so…sometimes cussing ensues.

Even with the LactAid, Josie was not having it at the breast. She panicked when we even put her on the Boppy pillow to feed.

I called a Lactation Consultant and set up an appointment immediately. She came to the house we were staying at in Sacramento and in the 90 minute visit, she had Josie latch twice using the laid back nursing position. It was her way to “trick” her back on the boob. We also had the LactAid set up so Josie was actually getting a flow of milk when she sucked.

We slowly began to build confidence again.

Until day 13 hit. Nursing strike number two.

All of a sudden Josie refused to latch again. The same old back aching and screaming meant something wasn’t right but I wasn’t sure what was going on. I was panicking again and wrote to some moms in FOCUS to help. Someone referred me to a local Lactation Consultant here in Denver and she came over the next day.

We discovered that Miss Josie was severely congested. Once we got her unplugged, she was latched and going strong at nursing yet again with the help of the LactAid. We also discovered that she has a stage 3 upper lip tie, which compromises her latch. This has been leaving me with vasospasms and slower supply build. This has left Josie with poor ability to latch, a weak suck, and increased gas.

Two weeks ago, I wanted to know how much milk Josie was getting from me and how much we actually needed to supplement her. We rented a scale and have been weighing her before, when we switch breasts, and after. It’s been tedious but pretty neat to see the actual results. The first week I was making about 10 ounces a day. Just yesterday I was up to 11.667 ounces for the day. So my supply is building but I do still have to supplement her with 1-1.5 ounces of donor breast milk every time we feed.

I have high hopes that we will keep building my supply and someday I can fully ditch the LactAid device with it’s stupid little tube and tape. We have an appointment in a few weeks for her upper lip tie to be evaluated and possibly lasered at a pediatric dentist office in town known for doing this procedure. I think that will be freeing for all of us – she will be able to nurse better, my nipples will be less sore, and she will drain my breasts more efficiently which will build my supply.

It’s been a tedious labor of love to persevere with breastfeeding. I have almost thrown in the towel on n.u.m.e.r.o.u.s. occasions. Friends and family have been so encouraging and supportive, especially Jonathan. I love that man more now than ever!

We still have quite the journey ahead of us, with the lip tie procedure and hopeful building of my supply. I will keep documenting our journey here to serve as a beacon of hope for those going through similar nursing issues.

Please pray to Our Lady of La Leche for my milk supply to increase if you remember today! 🙂

Adoption, Parenting

How and Why I Induced Lactation

December 17, 2014

I’ve lost all our male readers already.

It’s just me and you, ladies….so let’s talk lactation.

First things first. Did you know that women who have NOT given birth can still breastfeed their babies?

Amazing, right?

Well once you understand the physiology of breastfeeding and that it’s triggered by prolactin levels (controlled by the pituitary gland in the brain) it makes sense that a non-pregnant woman can lactate granted she elevates her prolactin.

You may be thinking…but don’t high prolactin levels decrease fertility?

Why yes, indeed it does….so why would this old infertile gal decrease her fertility even further?

That’s something we had to think through. I don’t really have great fertility to start with but to shut my cycle off completely? That was a scary thought at first as I couldn’t imagine not actively trying to get pregnant.

But then I realized I needed a break from my fertility treatment rigmarole.

BIGTIME!

This summer was brutal on my body, mind, and soul. I was finally ovulating but not conceiving. It was rough to see my body ovulate month after month on ultrasound only to yet again not get pregnant. This is due to the fact that my ovaries and insides are likely caked in scar tissue and adhesions. So even though I can “ovulate” it’s not really a good chance I would conceive anyhow.

Knowing this and that it will require physical therapy and/or surgery to remove the adhesions, Jonathan and I decided it was just time for a break. We’ve had spent well over 2.5 years doing crazy intense protocols month after month trying to conceive and it was all panning out fruitless. Suddenly shutting my cycle off so I couldn’t think about conceiving was a welcome idea.

A sanity vacation if you will.

That’s when the research began.

I’ve always known that breast milk is best for babies but I wasn’t afraid of formula per say. I mostly pursued adoptive breastfeeding for the bonding and emotional benefits. I wanted all that skin to skin contact. I wanted to build a nursing relationship with our daughter that no one else would be able to provide her. But the fact that she would be healthier and filled with antibodies via breast milk was a huge additional bonus.

So I got on Facebook and joined an adoptive breastfeeding group. They’ve been and continue to be a HUGE place of support and content for me. It’s where I received guidance and wisdom on how to begin lactation induction. Which brings me to the point of this entire post! 🙂

Below is how I induced lactation:

The above methods were an accelerated and modified version of the Newman-Goldfarb Method for induction. Some women do more, some women do less but the above protocol had me making 8 ounces of milk per day by the end of 7 weeks of pumping and taking the medications/herbs.

All women are different but I was told by my adoptive breastfeeding group that the amount I made was ahead of the usual…which was really exciting to hear!

Many women making that amount of milk at least took some form of birth control pill to prepare their breast tissue for lactation. I didn’t do any of that. I had two months to prepare but I wanted a shot at exclusively breastfeeding Josephine.  By the time she was born, I knew I had quite a ways to go since she would soon need at least double what I was making.

But that is another post 🙂

Stay tuned for next time when I talk about how nursing Josie has been going.

Milk bottles photo in title image by cinderellasg. (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)