During the first two days of Leafar’s life, his blood sugar count had been low, and as much as I had committed myself to strictly breastfeed, my milk hadn’t come in yet. The pediatrician suggested asking around to see if any friends might have a bit of extra milk they could donate - and if not, I’d have to consider supplementing with formula - something we personally did not want to do. I called my beloved midwife, @losangelesmidwife to see if she knew anyone who might be willing to share a bit of their breastmilk who was on a plant-based diet, as that was crucial to us, and she quickly connected me with @mattersofmotherhood who, without even knowing me, and without question, stepped up and donated a few ounces to us in the middle of the night. Needless to say, Leafar’s levels boosted, and we are now happily breastfeeding at home. Can’t thank @mattersofmotherhoodenough for getting us through those rough nights with your donation. This is true community. True sisterhood. True kindness. And I can’t wait to pay it forward one day soon. 🖤 ***UPDATE: just to address a few misconceptions about my caption. First, I’m not shaming anyone who chooses to use formula. Just like I would never shame anyone for the food they ate or anything for that matter. So, please don’t shame me for sharing our personal approach to nursing. Second, I did not starve my baby for his first two days of life. I’m not mad at ya’all who attacked me about it -because clearly you may not be familiar with how breast feeding works and that’s ok! I wasn’t either until I got pregnant! :) but for the first 2.5 days my breasts were producing colostrum (not the same thing as milk) and it’s absolutely normal for mom’s milk not to come in until day 5 sometimes. With that being said, my little one just needed to get through one night’s worth of feedings with supplemented donors milk. And I’m happy to report my milk came in shortly after that! So thanks for all the love and support everyone! Let’s keep it positive! ***
DAY 5 + MENTAL HEALTH +
Nourished Postpartum Challenge ———————————————————
🔹I’m going to speak from a Postpartum Doula perspective because that’s where I have dealt with Postpartum Mental Health.
🔹No one is off limits when it comes to Perinatal Mood & Anxiety Disorders(PMADS).
🔹The illness is poorly defined even today.
🔹It is one of the least openly talked about topics surrounding Postpartum because mothers feel shame & guilt surrounding these feelings. Doctors don’t know what to look for, they don’t ASK mothers how they are & often times don’t know how to properly diagnose or where to send Mother’s for treatment.
🔹The need for universal mental health screenings pre/post birth is deeply underrated & should be routine practice regarding maternal/paternal care, as well as in surrogate/adoptive parents.
🔹According to the CDC 1 in 10 women experience Postpartum Depression. In some states as high as 1 in 5.
🔹Postpartum depression is among the most common disorders after birth. There is also Postpartum Anxiety & Psychosis to name a few.
🔹“Postpartum depression has biological roots, but it is also characterized by psychosocial risk factors. “It’s an enormous transition from being a free person to being a person with a child,” Osborne said. “The biggest risk factor for developing postpartum depression is depression during pregnancy, but other risk factors are poor social support, high rates of trauma or adverse life events, and lack of sleep.” - - Lauren M. Osborne, MD, assistant director of the Johns Hopkins Women’s Mood Disorders Center and assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, is an expert in the diagnosis and treatment of mood and anxiety disorders during pregnancy and postpartum.
🔹We MUST do better for mothers. We need open dialogue surrounding PMADS. Better support options. Doctors who ASK mothers and know what to look for. Better treatment. Less stigma around the issue and more acceptance to say, “hey, you aren’t alone & it’s okay to seek help.”
DAY 4 + RELATIONSHIP SHIFTS + CONTINUED(friendships)
🔹The Friendship Shift 🔹
Whoa...a tough one. When I got pregnant, I was pretty much the first of my friends to have a baby. So when we announced, sure everyone was over the moon for me...but then came the falling off. Not because anything negative had happened, but because I was entering a different chapter than many of my friends.
🔹At first I took it personally. I used to tell Christian, “why have so few people called to check on me? Or to see if I want to hang out?” — I wasn’t dying, I was creating a baby. I’m still fun, I still want to go to the bar(i just can’t drink) I still want to go out to dinners or concert or hiking...I think at one point, I cried about it. It wasn’t until about 5-6 months in that I accepted we are just on a different journey of life and that is OK. I think I took it so personal at first because it’s only natural for me to be a caretaker and being a woman who loves pregnancy, birth & babies so much - it’s innate for me to check in on people. So...during pregnancy you “lose” friends & realize you have to start building a new community of friends/mama’s who are going through a similar experience.
🔹Then came birth...again...not that everyone isn’t so happy for you, but you are experiencing different phases of life. So...some more friends drop off...you still have those close, close friends who will always be there no matter what. I am beyond thankful for those rock solid friendships. After baby is born, it takes time to want to be around people often...so perhaps some friends felt I didn’t want to see them, but obviously never the case. I’m very forward, I would tell you. It’s just a huge adjustment in the beginning and you need time.
🔹I kind of “mourned” my friendships fading out in a sense. It signified the end of one chapter and beginning of a new. I accepted the changes. I still love all of the people I don’t often see...but with this new chapter came a new community. New friendships. A new life in a sense. Different things. Hey, I find going to the park fun. My 30's single friends with no kids, probably do NOT😂🤷🏻♀️