Wisdom You’ve Passed On – July 27

This post was written as part of The Breastfeeding Cafe’s Blog Carnival for 2012. For more information on the Breastfeeding Cafe, check out this site. If you would like to participate in this year’s carnival, just post on your personal blog and put a link in the comment section below.  To receive email updates for next year, contact Timbra landslidephotography {at} hotmail {dot} com. Today’s post is about the wisdom you’ve passed on to others. Please read the other posts in today’s carnival listed in the comments section of this post. The Carnival runs July 16th through the 31st!

__________________________________________________________________________________________________

Jasmine Jafferali, MPH, ACE-CPT is a Lifestyle and Wellness Consultant specializing in perinatal, maternal, infant and family health and fitness.  Her focus is on gluten free/allergy free cooking and baking and improving gut health. It is her personal mission to raise her children to be healthy and happy. She wants to help you do the same and to empower you to make realistic and healthy choices for you and your families. Jasmine lives in Chicago with her husband, Jeff, and their children, Lilly and Luke.   Jasmine enjoys working out, being outdoors and spending time with her family.  You can find her at www.healthyjasmine.com

Today’s Prompt:  We all know someone who feels like no one ever “warned” them what life would be like during pregnancy, birth, breastfeeding, early weeks of sleeplessness, toddlerhood, etc. What parenting and breastfeeding wisdom have you shared?

My guess right now is you have either under or over estimated what pregnancy, birth.breastfeeding or motherhood will be like.  I know I did.  Even with all the education and knowledge I have, it doesn’t compare to what life experience has to give to us.  Take the tools you have learned and make it your own to share and pass along any insightful wisdom you can.  As when you share your wisdom, it gets passed down along for futures to come.  I share with you my story:

  

Five years ago today at 1:13am, I became a mother.  An intended homebirth, 36 hours of labor, I ended up in the hospital with a c-section.  My daughter humbled me as I laid in the hospital bed stuck at 7cm, resting comfortably with an epidural.  Looking at the monitor I closed my eyes and said, “God, apparently you have bigger plans than MY birth plan, whatever it is, I surrender.”  I also told my husband this baby was a feisty one, I could tell. 

I was one of those know it all, I would never do this when I get pregnant or when I become a mom type of girl.  You know, the 13-year old who knows it all and ready to move out.  Yes, that was me.  Because I had a Master’s in Public Health reading studies on maternal and infant health…because I personal trained expecting moms….then they began to ask me breastfeeding questions.  Oh curve ball.  I proactively took it a step further and signed up for a 3 day Lactation Education Course by Jan Barger, yes the guru of breastfeeding.  After all of those breastfeeding pictures, I was scared to breastfeed, but wow, I learned so much that I thought I would have breastfeed my kids way past one.  Oh yes, then I am going to eat healthy and exercise every day.  Hello morning and night sickness and 45 pounds later…after my unsuccessful homebirth, I thought breastfeeding should be a snap.  Oh hi mastitis in early August during 100 degree weather…I thought I was in hell and so did my husband when I asked him to turn on the heat with 5 blankets on me… Then I read all the sleeping books…walking in Target with toothpicks holding my eyes up, I walked out with the mother of all sleeping books…Weisbluth’s book.  I intended to cloth diaper…ha seriously, so I bought greener ones…I made my own baby food…sometimes.  When my milk supply started to go down (and Yes, I did everything I could that I knew how, I had fantastic lactation consultants), I succumbed to formula when my daughter was 9 months, but still hell bent on nursing her.  That is until my daughter nursed for the last time two weeks before her first birthday.  I remember she nursed for a few minutes that morning, got up and walked away.  I felt heartbroken like she broke up with me.  The next morning I went to the chair and she snubbed me.  I guess we are done I thought.

You see, no one can ever tell you what life will be like pregnant, what birth will feel like, what breastfeeding will do for you, you just have to experience it for yourself.  It humbles you, it makes you a better person.  After all I have endured with my two pregnancies, (I am a been there done that girl now) I am still a strong supporter of homebirths, even though my failed, big fan natural births, I am a big advocate of VBACs, even though mine resulted in a uterine rupture, and heck yes, I feel all should be breastfeeding and beyond, even though I gave my daughter formula, but nursed my son until he was 16 months old (small victories).  My daughter is an angel compared to my son during toddler years and can’t parent or discipline the same, they are two different kids.  But here is what I can tell you:

Pregnancy:  Get your Vitamin D levels checked, take your food-based prenatals along with fish oils and probiotics daily.  Yes aim to eat something healthy every day, stretch, exercise, get good quality sleep.  And for heaven’s sake, don’t take a hospital birthing class, even if you opt for the epidural, you will learn all of your options from all perspectives, not just one. 

Postpartum:  Except your postpartum body, it will be gone within weeks.  Don’t dwell so soon on getting your pre baby body back, you’ll set yourself up for heartache.  Embrace the new one you have created and focus on getting healthier each day.  Set up meal registry.  You need to be fed and nourished because you won’t want to cook, trust me.  This gives friends and family a way to help take care of you and see the baby.  Make sure you have a few loads of unfolded laundry beside you so they can fold it for you while you are nursing. 

Birth:  Don’t have a “birth plan”, make a wish list.  Nurses will roll their eyes at you behind your back.  A wish list is all the things you wish to have as part of your birthing experience as well as after the baby is born.  A wish list allows for Plan B and C. 

Early Sleepless Nights:  Don’t start complaining if your child is not sleeping through the night at 4-weeks old and if they do, enjoy it and don’t tell the others, because you need new mom friends.

Toddlerhood:  Yes, give your tot good, whole foods to continue eating healthy.  Goldfish crackers is crack for kids, please don’t buy the stuff.  I bought tons of frozen fruits and veggies my daughter ate right out of the bag, until she was almost two…but now she is a wonderful eater and will try everything at least once.  My son, he hit the picky eater stage…my daughter did too, but I was persistent and consistent with her and it paid off.   Fingers crossed for my son. 

Breastfeeding:  You milk is as good as your are feeding your body well.  What you eat gets passed down to your baby.  Don’t eat foods that our bodies was not designed to digest.  And Yes, give it a shot.  Yes you will feel like a cow, yes it will feel like it is the only thing you are doing the first few months and yes it will hurt…in the beginning.  Find a great lactation consultant to work with you.  Do not worry if your baby is getting enough.  Babies are so intuitive they’ll let you know if they are hungry and when they are full.  Breastfeeding is a small phase out of your entire life to give your baby something so important for their gut health, which they will pass down to their children someday.  Perhaps register for an iPad so you can keep up on social media and your reading while you are nursing.  It was a blessing for me the second time around. 

Parenting:  Here is what I will tell you.  Take a family/parenting class.  I will never understand why parents feel this is not necessary.  We take continuing education credits for our jobs, to advance positions, get a better job, to be better at our jobs…but don’t you want to be the best parent you can be?  So why not a parenting course?  My husband and I took a weekend family class at a local church during my second pregnancy and found it to be quite helpful.  I still go back now and read about trying different approaches to my kids, but also taking a deeper look at who they are as individuals, their needs as children, my phase of life, my relationship with my husband, it all has an impact in who we are as parents, but also how we parent. 

Whatever season of life you are in, embrace it, extend yourself some grace and give your children some grace too.  You are learning from them while they are learning from you.  That is the beauty of parenting.  Use nice words, lead by example, practice patience, listen, be thankful, show compassion and trust yourself.  Don’t get hung up on trying to be the perfect parent because you don’t know what perfect is anyways.

 
Advertisements

3 Comments

Filed under Breastfeeding Cafe Carnival, Community, Pregnancy, The Normal Course of Breastfeeding

3 responses to “Wisdom You’ve Passed On – July 27

  1. Jasmine – great pearls of wisdom! I look forward to following your “healthy jasmine”. One of our kiddos has tremendous struggles with her gut, despite being nursed for 22 months. Just goes to show that there is no “perfect” way to mother!

  2. Thank you Krystyna, exactly. Each time I thought I had it down, I come across another roadblock, my son is proof of that. 🙂

  3. Jeana Jones

    I love your idea for a wish list instead of a birth plan. I’ve had birth plans with both of my kids, and my kids didn’t read them!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s