Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Just Another Reason to Breastfeed

You know how beneficial breastfeeding is. How nourishing. How perfect. How it actually changes as time goes on to adapt to exactly what your sweet growing baby needs. That's not even talking about cost savings compared to formula feeding.

So do you need another reason to breastfeed your baby?

Well, I've got one for ya, and so does La Leche League. How about that YOUR MILK IS ALWAYS AVAILABLE? Here is an excerpt on that very subject from La Leche League's The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding:

As a nursing mother, you can take off on short notice for a family excursion, a long trip, or a full-day picnic - situations in which formula can spoil. You can make your plans and pack your bags without worrying about having an adequate supply of formula for the baby - a formula that may not be available everywhere. You won't even have to be concerned that a strange water supply will make your baby ill, since a breastfed baby does not need extra water.

Wherever you and baby are, so is your milk. It's a most reassuring thought, particularly in the rare, but always stressful time when the usual, normal supplies of food are cut off. This doesn't happen too often, but we do hear from mothers who have had such experiences and are most grateful that their little ones were spared the brunt of this disturbing situation.

In the Midwest, an unexpected and severe snowstorm stranded a family in their car. While the husband went for help, his wife snuggled the baby under her coat, keeping them both warm, and the baby nursed and slept. The young mother found the feeling of normalcy associated with feeding the baby helped to keep her own fears in check until a rescue crew came for them.

Another family unexpectedly spent a night in the mountains. The four Walkers of Ohio - mom, dad, five-year-old Scott, and one-year-old Adam, in a backpack atop his father's shoulders - set out for an afternoon's hike and didn't make it back to their camper for twenty-one hours. "We had hiked these trails so often we thought we knew them all thoroughly," Judy Walker wrote. But when the Walkers started down the trail they thought led back to their car, they inadvertently went down another trail, which they learned later, "went right off the map." The night spent in the isolated area was cold, rainy, and so dark "we couldn't see each other." Judy concludes her story: "My husband kept scooping leaves over us trying to keep us dry, and all night, at least once an hour, Adam woke, hungry, wet, screaming. Each time I nursed him, as it was the only thing that calmed him. I thank God that throughout that cold, wet night I had warm milk to fill my baby's tummy and to comfort him."

Kay Troisi from Alabama tells of her family's experience:
A hurricane came roaring through our community with little advance warning of its nearness or intensity. A lot of damage resulted, including many fallen wires, and snapped pine trees perilously perched on power lines. Consequently, we were without electricity for two and a half days. During this time, I realized even more what an advantage breastfeeding is. Our daughter, Tamara, was only three weeks old and not having to worry about how to feed her was an immense rlief. There was no concern over preparing formula, not to mention sterilizing, storing, or heating it without electricity. Not only did I have ready nutrition and reassurance for Tamara, but baby and mother were also consoled by our nursing session during the worst of the storm. We could be in our little world while nursing, oblivious to the external ragings. After the storm, continuous closeness ensured a peaceful baby, contented mother, and overall a happier family, during a time when other families might have been in chaos.

So if you need another reason to breastfeed your baby, look no further. You've found it - CONVENIENCE!

That is definitely one of my favorite things about breastfeeding, and I look forward to it with our upcoming arrival as well. Because seriously - us "mamas of littles" need all the convenience we can get!

If you need some breastfeeding support, make sure to join us at Milk Monologues every Wednesday at 1pm, and we also have our evening Breastfeeding Support Group this Thursday at 6:30 pm, both at Educated Mommy.

We look forward to helping you on your breastfeeding journey!


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