Time to Say Goodbye

…to the weekly Breastfeeding Blog Hop. This week, the blog hop topic is “Passing the Torch”, and it comes at an appropriate time for ‘lil Man and I. He’s moving on to “big kid” foods–O’s, goldfish, bananas, scrambled eggs. Now it’s time for Mama to fill a different role in his life. I have decided that my posts from the blog hop have been helpful and fun for me, but that I am not going to be an active participant on a week to week basis. It’s time to pass the torch on to other BFing mamas who have things to say. I’ll drop by from time to time, but it’s time to focus on other things that are more “immediate” in the ‘lil Burghers lives.

Thank you to all the mamas who have been involved in the Hop–you’ve been helpful to ‘lil Man and I, and I guarantee we would not have been successful without you.

Will We Last Through? #BFing

Well, I am proud to announce that today is ‘lil Man’s 11 month birthday and we have made it through with a daily feed or two. Today’s Breastfeeding Blog Hop (hosted by Life With Levi, The Slacker Mom, and Diary of a Devil Dog Wife is about Holiday Survival–what concerns are there for getting through the holidays as a #BFing mom. My biggest concern is whether or not we will last through the ‘lil Man’s 1st birthday and Christmas.

As I’ve mentioned before, we have been down to 1-2 feedings a month and no more pumping. ‘lil Man is staying with my parents for two days, and I have no plans to pump while he is away. If our time together is done…I think I am ok with that, although it sure would be nice to make it through the holidays and get our “1 Year” #MomBadge.

Sadly, I had a taste of what it would be like to not feed ‘lil Man the other day. He flat out refused to nurse. I think it’s because Mr. Burgher keeps this amazing little “Bag of Magic” in our room at night for the middle of the night feedings.

The cooler comes in handy–no running down the stairs while ‘lil Man screams. We’ve never had a problem with having to heat bottles, thank goodness!

He had ate about an hour before, so had a full tummy, but I took it as he just didn’t want anything to do with me. I went to get dressed, and I saw this hanging in my closet:

What a stinkin’ sign, huh? It jabbed me a little…I took the picture then had to shed a few tears. Luckily, ‘lil Man was more than ready for his nighttime feed when I put him to sleep.

Hopefully we’ll have good news to report in a month!

It Just Happens When it Happens

This week’s Life With Levi breastfeeding blog hop is ““Anywhere, Everywhere, Nowhere” – aka – breastfeeding locations.

Honestly, I am not really ashamed or scared of the good ‘ol NIP–Nursing in Public. Lil Man needs to eat when he wants to, so we do what we have to do. There are a few things that distract him, like “grown up food” and his energetic sister, but pretty much when he wants to eat, he has a one track mind.

Is there anywhere I wouldn’t breastfeed? For sure. But they are personal decisions and I have a place to go when I need to. Like at certain relatives’ homes–I know that I need to go to another room, it’s a fact of life. Or church–that to me is a given obvious. Or if I am wearing a dress–you know, the kind that doesn’t have access? Yeah, you make that mistake once as a Milkin’ Mama and you never do again. The beach–yeah, I wouldn’t wanna do it there because of the sand, but a pool? Check that one off my list many times. I probably wouldn’t while walking around the grocery store either, unless I could get him to not snooze in the Moby Wrap and nurse instead. A public restroom–NEVER tell me that’s the place to go and nurse or even pump. To me, that’s unacceptable and society needs to recognize that.

I guess my small list of no-no’s could be a long list to more seasoned mamas or a short list compared to others’. The great thing about nursing (…and motherhood…and parenthood) is that YOU (and your spouse/partner) are the ones who make the decisions as to what is best for you and your baby. That might be to nurse, to nurse in public, to nurse in private, to supplement, or to formula feed. None of the options should make a mama (or daddy or baby) feel ashamed.

Lil Man and I are really lucky to have the backbones and support system we do to make this possible. If you are someone who needs a little extra support or confidence, check out the other ladies on this week’s hop or leave a comment below. We’re glad to have you stop by and read today!

Really? Really?

This week’s Life With Levi breastfeeding blog hop is about Dumb Breastfeeding Comments.

I usually don’t like to give you guys the cloudy side of life from our side of tahn, but today’s blog hop is indeed dedicated to the dumb things that people say about breastfeeding. And I’ve heard a few funny things…but I can only laugh and not let them get me down. If you are a victim of telling me these things, no fear. I took no offense–I hope I was able to react kindly and let you know that I am proud to be a nursin’ mama, doing the best for ‘Lil Man that I can.

Here are a few gems in my treasure box…

+ Are you really still nursing him? Shouldn’t he be done with that by now? (At three months)

+ I don’t know how you can keep that up. I would’ve gave up long ago.

+ Aren’t his teeth sharp?

+ Isn’t carrying that pump around annoying?

+ How many times a week do you need to use the Mother’s Room? (REALLY? A WEEK???)

+ Doesn’t it get old?

+ He’s going to have mommy issues.

+ You really can do that in public?

+ Are you just doing that to save money? They do make coupons for formula you know.

+ Don’t you miss your freedom/independence?

+ What do you mean you have to carry milk home in a cooler to your baby? (Someone at an airport)

+ When do you cut him off? Isn’t 6 months good enough?

+ Doesn’t it get old?

+ (And my personal favorite…which I actually find VERY hilarious…) Wait, so you switch sides…so does that mean one is flavored differently, like one is chocolate milk or something?

But then, these funny comments make me realize how little education there is out there on breastfeeding, benefits, and practices. My hope is I can help bring exposure and positive light to those around me…if they are willing to hear. But don’t stop asking the questions–it’s better to know the truth, right?

Call it a Throwback–A Victory for Lil Miss A and Mama

This week’s Life With Levi breastfeeding blog hop is about Breastfeeding Celebrations.

Usually, I talk about the great things happening for Lil Man and I, so there is always something to celebrate with us. Today, I’d like to share a little bit a personal celebration I had when I tried to nurse Lil Miss A (before we realized that she had a milk issue and I had a soy issue).

Lil Miss A was decently interested in trying to nurse; however, the nurses at the hospital gave her a bottle and a pacifier relatively quickly. Being a single mom, I felt sort of helpless, so I didn’t demand that neither happened (like we did with Lil Man). My parents and friends were supportive of us trying, but the nurses weren’t too helpful and there was no access to an LC while I was in the hospital.

They did recommend this crazy shield that I had to apply before we tried to nurse. This little clear piece of rubber was a huge pain in the butt. If she was hungry, I had to whip it out, apply, then try to get her to latch. For the first two weeks, she didn’t really want to eat without it; however, I have to admit I did many a happy dance when she latched without it (by the end of our nursing time).

Sometimes, it’s the little things, like celebrating freedom from a shield or that I am able to say I did feed Lil Miss A for about four weeks. We worked through issues, and those are also quite worthy of celebration and recognition.

Nursing Mamas? What celebrations, big or small, did you have while breastfeeding your babes? Drop on by the blog hop and share!

Nursing in Public

Today’s post is part of Life With Levi’s Breastfeeding Blog Hop. We’re talking about “Nursing in Public” this week.

My mom once told me that when you had a baby, you would lose all self-consciousness of your body. All those doctors and nurses coming in and out during L&D, recovery, and in your room…there is no avoiding having strangers, family, or friends see the lady parts. Sometimes, thankfully, those people (::ahem, Mr. Burgher circa October 2008::) don’t always realize that they are in the vicinity of your “private” public time.

But, some people have different opinions about public nursing, and after a personal incident with many hurt feelings, I get that. The thing is, I am quite proud of the success ‘Lil Man and I have had on this journey and I hate to miss out on get-togethers just because ‘Lil Man is getting his dinner on. Yet, I know that if someone is not comfortable, it’s not appropriate.

That’s why we carry a nursing cover with us (even though ‘Lil Man HATES it and tries to tear it off) so that ‘Lil Man can eat on demand. Or, we bring pumped milk or rice cereal. We make it work. But there are still times when I am comfortable nursing in public (98% of the time with that cover) like:
* When ‘Lil Man was a week old and needed food NOW at the mall post-Santa photo. I asked my Mother-in-Law if it was allowed, and we settled in on a mall bench and got to work.
* At my friend’s baseball game. We were sitting sort of behind the bleachers under an umbrella and I just did what I had to do.
* In the backseat of the (parked) car while we waited for Mr. Burgher to buy some dog food.
* At a friend’s community pool (with ‘Lil Man tucked under a towel).

I guess nursing in public is something that you just have to feel comfortable with. . .and need to make sure those around you are comfortable with your choice. Hopefully, as more and more mamas get educated about breastfeeding, the public will become more comfortable with it and we can all eat what we want when we want it. Until that time, I will do my best to be respectful of others’ opinions (but please be open with me so I know them).


Speaking of nursing in public, here are a few shots from Saturday’s Big Latch On event/world record breaking in Myrtle Beach, SC. ‘Lil Man and I took part while we were on vacation. 18 Mamas and babies latched on for 1 minute (‘Lil Man took full advantage of a drink in the hot sun and latched for a really long time). Enjoy the photos from Lauren Boyd Photography!

Resources for Breastfeeding

Today’s post is part of Life With Levi’s Breastfeeding Blog Hop. We’re talking about “Breastfeeding Resources” this week.

I’ve always tried to be extremely independent, so when it came to breastfeeding, I figured I would just do it the natural way. Some of my family had done it before, and I felt like it would be pretty basic. My mom was with me to guide the way with A (and tell me that I didn’t have to listen to the over-advice giving nurse who was the substitute for a lactation consultant), and aside from A’s food issues, we did ok. With E, I felt like we instantly had a groove, but I sure did welcome the hints from a truly caring nurse at Magee. This time, I had plenty of lactation resources available, but chose not to utilize them because I had the good nurse, my mom, and my mother in law. Nothing could go wrong, right?

Well, a week in of constant hunger (on E’s part–he was eating for about an hour with 30-45 minutes in between feedings) and pain (on my part), I needed help. I thought, there is no way that people on Twitter would be talking about breastfeeding. . . would I lose followers if I asked? Versus asking, I searched, and found tons of great tweeps who were very open about breastfeeding (and used hashtags like #BFing and #BFCafe). Who knew? From these new “friends”, I found the inspiration to go on and a place to turn when I needed some advice. (How great when you feel all alone at 4 AM!)

#BFing Blog Hop: Rockin’ It

Today’s post is another one in the series from Life With Levi (the Breastfeeding Blop Hop). This week’s topic is “Breastfeeding and Body Changes”.

Growing up a “big kid”, I rarely had confidence in my body. There is was plenty about it I didn’t like. When I became a Mom, I threw all that negativity out the window. I learned that I’d just have to rock what was given to me, because that’s just how it is.

Since steady breastfeeding ‘Lil Man, I haven’t gone through what I hear are the “typical” body changes. There are some things I am ok with, and some things I am not, but that’s the breaks. Here’s what’s happened with me.

1. They say you will lose all the baby weight QUICK. Just two weeks ago, when ‘Lil Man was 6 months and a week old, I finally got down to pre-pregnancy weight. And I haven’t really moved the scale from there. I haven’t had the easiest time losing weight my whole life, so this is really no surprise here. But, I have been eating nutritious stuff ever since giving birth (preggers =’d EAT WHAT YOU CAN KEEP DOWN) and walking every day for about a mile and a quarter since March. It’s the way my body is, I guess. The fight is constant, but I will get “there”.

2. They say you will likely not cycle. I blame the BC pill I was on, but oh, cycle did I! Every two weeks for the first 4 months on the pill. I finally stopped that, but I am not a “lucky one”. Hmmph.

3. Your boobs will sag. Personally, I have never loved the ladies as much as I do, thanks. 😉

4. You will lose your desire to be intimate with your partner. Sure, being touched by a little one all day could cause some of the intimacy to go away, but I have to disagree. Mr. Burgher and I hold hands and sneak kisses all the time like we are teenagers. Nothing has changed just because I am a mom a breastfeeding mom.

5. You will have aches and pains. Not gonna lie to you, I have have extreme sensitivity and various pains. Sure, it’s not fun, but the pain does go away, promise.

Those are just a few of the “wive’s tales” I’ve heard while looking for support as a BFing Mama. I love my body, and I am proud of how it rocks. Seriously, I make milk for my kiddo, how cool is that? Even after Lil Man is long done with his mama, I am going to remember how much confidence he gave me and keep on rockin’ it.

Pumping: My Story

Today’s post is another one in the series from Life With Levi (the Breastfeeding Blop Hop). The topic is “Pumping”.

Pumping. Where do I even begin?

My journey with pumping started in 2008 when Lil Miss A was born. She had a hard time latching (so much that I had a lovely rubber shield to “help” her out), so once I was released from the hospital, it was evident I was going to have to pump to help myself out. I had a “hand me down” pump—body only—and would have to sit for 40-45 minutes to get a few decent ounces for the little one. It wasn’t a supply issue, but I think a lack of money led me to a lack of options, thus I took what I could get and ended up with a horn style that really didn’t fit with my body. Plus, I hadn’t heard about the wonders of a Pump Ease, so I had to sit and hold the horns while still paying attention to my newborn. Luckily, I didn’t have to put up a fight with the pump for long—A didn’t take to breastfeeding because of her milk allergy, so it was off to formula we went.

When it was time to have E, I knew I was going to try to breastfeed again, but I didn’t know what to do about the pump. In fact, I didn’t even look at it to see if all the parts were there. The day I came home from the hospital, I went to pump just because I didn’t feel completely empty after a feeding and realized the bottles were at my parents’ house and one of the valves had deteriorated to the point of no use. I was lucky that my friend sent me home from the hospital with an amazing supply of Medela 2.5 oz bottles, which somehow fit my Playtex pump, so I was able to pump one sided directly into a bottle. Phew!

My Pump!

I pumped one sided for a few weeks (everyday, out of necessity to relieve my body from a little one with a sucking addiction) and I got irritable, cranky, and tired. I didn’t give up, but I knew this would never work when I went back to work. My mom told me about how lucky I was to have an electric pump and a safe place to pump at work—she used to have to hand pump in the restroom—but it didn’t help my frustration with myself. That and the pump was starting to give up on me, groaning with every turn. I hear those things can smoke, so I didn’t have it so bad. Eventually, I gave in and picked up a Medela Pump in Style.

I was addicted. It was so amazing to have a pump that really worked, I felt spoiled! I was able to build up a great stock that kept E satisfied while I was away on work business in March and it’s kept up with me since. My pump goes everywhere I do and has been a huge help. While excusing yourself during the day to pump or going to your car to pump while out and about is not so fun, it’s all worth it in the end.

Mom's busy!

While I might not have the amazing guts to pump while working out or walking the dog (check out Life With Levi’s videos), I have pumped without fear many times. In the parking lot while waiting to get my Steeler tattoo? Check. In the car while driving to Columbus to get said tattoo? Check. In the airport? Check (albeit a horrible experience). Running through Las Vegas to get back to my hotel and pump? Check. Pumping while working on multi-page reports for work? Check. In the end, it’s so worth it, knowing that I am giving E great nutrition, even if it can be painful at times (if you wait too long in between) or a drop or two gets spilled. I’m proud to say, I am a pumpin’ mama!

Our “Team”

Today’s post is another one in the series from Life With Levi (the Breastfeeding Blop Hop). The topic is “Breastfeeding and Dads”, so today’s post is going to be about how Mr. Burgher helps out with the success ‘Lil Man and I have experienced in the last six months.

A fierce couponer, Mr. Burgher has filled our stockpile, friends, and local charities up with plenty of formula that he got for free, but not one sip has been needed to sustain our ‘Lil Man. In the last 6 months, ‘Lil Man has not had a drop of formula, and that’s not a feat E and I have completed on our own. Mr. Burgher is a huge part of our succesful team.

In the first few days (maybe even weeks) of ‘Lil Man’s life, Mr. Burgher never had to give him a bottle. Now, being a SAHD, he gives E bottles on a daily basis. But just because he isn’t directly involved in the food chain, he sure does have a big impact on our teamwork. You might think that dads don’t have much to do with breastfeeding, but let me tell you all the awesome things he does in 24 hours. . .

6-6:30 AM: Mr. Burgher will get up with Mama Burgher and ‘Lil Man. He changes ‘Lil Man’s diaper then puts him in my arms. Ok, so Mr. Burgher does get to go back to sleep at this point, but I am so grateful for the help first thing in the morning.

7:30ish: Mr. Burgher packs my ice pack and any clean bottles into the pump bag. He prepares a rice bottle (rice cereal plus 4 oz from the stash) and a backup 6 ouncer just in case their adventures keep them out past lunch time.

10ish: E begs his daddy for his morning bottle. He feeds him.

Lunchtime: E gets his rice and applesauce (or bananas). No milk here, but this is not an easy feat. E would rather suck the food off his fingers, so the mere fact that Mr. Burgher is willing to fight this one out really helps E and I stay on a bottle/pump schedule.

Mid-afternoon: If he is not on a milk strike (which happens), he will take that 6 ounce bottle.

5:30ish I arrive home from work and cuddle with E. Mr. Burgher puts the Boppy and ‘cough cough’ (A’s name for the burp cloth) in my lap. While I feed E, Mr. Burgher is busy at work turning my pumped milk into bottles for the next day (or freezer bags if there’s plenty to spare). Oh, and speaking of freezer bags! This man is the MASTER of figuring out how to get milk in the bags without a) spilling or b) using the “attachment” I bought after a near-miss. So thankful.

8:30ish ‘Lil Man and I have some more alone time before bed. Mr. Burgher burps a milk coma’ed baby and puts him in the crib.

After the baby is asleep, Mr. Burgher is cleaning bottles (again, he’s a pro, but he’s very thankful for a great bottle brush) or preparing “meals” for the next day.

I am sure there are people out there that think moms who breastfeed have to completely “go it alone”, but I am not one of them. I made it clear to Mr. Burgher that if I decided to go through with this AND E stuck with it, that I wasn’t going to do this by myself. And Mr. Burgher made it very clear back to me that he knew this is what decision was best for our family and he was willing to do what it takes to make this work. Mr. Burgher, ‘Lil Man and I are so happy that you are part of our #BFing Team!