Everything comes in 3’s!
I was absolutely blessed to have 3 healthy babies at Adelaide’s Ashford Hospital. With the wonderful support of midwives and staff I felt I had the ‘gist’ of breastfeeding 4 days after my discharge with each bub. But each baby also came with a new set of rules, a new preference in feeding positions and latching. It wasn’t until I got home that our feeding journey really began every time and, as it happens, in 3 major ways. Overcoming all odds, I was still fortunate enough to breastfeed until 10-11 months but only because I had formula to help me get through.
Bub #1: Tongue ties – OUCH!
Anyone who’s breastfed a baby with a tongue tie is cringing right now. Ouch! It was not the feeding experience I had imagined when I was pregnant. No amount of nipple cream or shields was going to fix this, and I would dread each impending feed. Fortunately, my son was happy to take a bottle, so we included formula as part of his feeding journey. This gave me some ‘healing time’ until his tongue tie was treated. We continued to mix feed a combination of breast feeding and formula until he was 10 months old.
Bub #2: Milk Allergies
After having my second son I expected breastfeeding to be difficult again. But wow, to begin with he was a breeze. We had no issues whatsoever until 4 weeks when my maternal instincts kicked in. He was struggling to gain weight and his constant vomiting had me, and his paediatricians, concerned. Enter, a milk allergy. While I was able to continue breastfeeding, this came with a set of conditions; no dairy or soy for me for the duration of breastfeeding. At this point I turned to formula to help me with his feeding journey. But with only 1 suitable formula on pharmacy shelves (and an international brand at that), a 2-tin restriction per purchase, and never any stock available it was abundantly obvious there was a demand for Aussie made formula.
Bub #3: Sleep issues
After the birth of my third baby, I thought I had all the feeding hurdles under my belt, but within weeks I was exhausted. Overnight my daughter was waking hourly with colic and having 3 children under the age of 4 was taking its toll on my body. The exhaustion and stress of waking 6-7 times a night drained me of my milk supply. I quickly introduced formula, this time to help me and support my wellbeing. Supplementing with formula gave me a much-needed feeding break and allowed my husband to help with night feeds. Again, we continued to mix feed until she was nearly 12 months old.
Finding the balance between breastfeeding and formula.
Formula helped relieve many of the feeding issues I faced along the way and gave me the opportunity to breastfeed as long as I did.
And our feeding journey still isn’t over, with all 3 still on formula and milk drink supplements to this day!