Let me set the scene for you: it’s 1:00 AM, I’ve just delivered my first baby sans epidural, and I’m being wheeled from delivery into my hospital room. I notice a bulletin board as I’m getting settled in with the nurse’s name, a cute smiley face, and the word goals.
And I’m like, WHAT DO YOU MEAN GOALS?! My goal was to have a baby safely … check! Mission accomplished. Now my goal is to recover from the 24 hours of labor I just endured and stare at this tiny human that’s been living inside me for the past nine months.
Written under the “goals” section of my bulletin board was “Feed baby 8-12 times in first 24 hours.” And that’s where my journey with breastfeeding began…
My Journey (part one)
Breastfeeding can be complicated and hard, especially if you’ve never done it before. I think that’s why so many moms give up so quickly; they have no idea what they are doing (How could they? It’s their first time), and they don’t get the support and information they need. I’m so thankful that Brookwood had well-informed nurses and lactation consultants (LCs) to help me, encourage me, and educate me in those first few hours and days. They calmed me down, eased my nerves, and told me I was doing awesome. My nurses and LCs laid a strong foundation for a successful breastfeeding journey and set me on the right track.
But, I was pretty panicked before I left the hospital. I knew I would have so many questions when I got home about pumping, latching, milk storage, if I was producing enough, if he was eating enough, how often to feed, what I could eat, etc. Before I checked out of the hospital, they gave me the best advice: join the Mom’s Best for Breastfeeding Facebook group. And boy, am I glad that I did.
Mom’s Best for Breastfeeding
Facebook groups in general (especially those designed for moms) can get a pretty bad reputation. You have probably heard horror stories about super judgey moms and awful mom-shaming. But I’m here to tell you, this group is legit awesome.
Mom’s Best for Breastfeeding is a judgment-free, super supportive community of moms in Birmingham and surrounding areas that have TONS of experience with breastfeeding. Their goal is to meet you where you are in your breastfeeding journey and help you accomplish YOUR goals for nursing your child.
The members of this group all have very unique breastfeeding journeys: nursing on demand, exclusively pumping, supplementing with formula, tandem feeding their toddler and baby, latch issues, and extended breastfeeding, just to name a few. Literally, you name it, someone in this group has gone through it.
I cannot tell you how much valuable information and much-needed advice I’ve gotten from joining this group. Not only have my questions been answered quickly (even in the middle of the night!), but I’ve learned so much from other people’s posts and comments. I mean, what else are you going to do at 3:00 am when you are up nursing your baby?
Unfortunately, our society is still very misinformed about breastfeeding. I’ve even been shocked by how little some members of the medical community know about breastfeeding. But these ladies know what’s up. They’ve learned from experience, provide well-documented articles and resources, and they never make you feel silly or stupid for asking a question. And most importantly, they make sure you don’t feel alone on your journey.
If you are currently nursing or wanting to nurse, Mom’s Best for Breastfeeding is the Facebook group for you. From issues and problems to general questions and funny stories, they are exactly the kind of mom support you need!
My Journey (part two)
I am still nursing my 19-month-old toddler, and I give a ton of credit to Mom’s Best for Breastfeeding for helping me get here. While many of my friends and family members don’t understand why I’m still nursing, this group has cheered me on to make the best decision for me and my baby. I love to share my breastfeeding knowledge and experience with other moms who have questions (I might even do a few more posts about it here), but for now, I’ll sign off by sharing my son’s life motto: Milk First, Questions Later.