Happy World Wide Breastfeeding Week (with a Giveaway!) | Still Playing School

Happy World Wide Breastfeeding Week (with a Giveaway!)

By Devany LeDrew | Labels:
Happy World Wide Breastfeeding Week!  Combining E and D's time together, I've breastfeed for 24 collective months so far!  It's been two years of an amazing bonding experience with all of my babies.


Nursing a newborn E was a difficult task.  My milk took what seemed like forever to come in (four days actually which is within the normal range). I wish I had enough confidence as a first time mom to know that we would be fine if we nursed as much as E wanted, but I was doing enforced timed feedings in the hospital as she fell asleep at the breast.  We were being told to keep her awake to eat when her body was telling her the comfort of being close to me was all she needed to sleep. She was satisfied, but a nurse brought her back from testing and handed her to me claiming, "she was starving."  I burst into tears.  Why wasn't my body doing what it was supposed to do?  (It was!  I wish I could go back in time and tell myself that, but instead I will tell all future nursing mommas that I meet!)

What I needed most was someone to tell me that newborns are still satisfied before your milk comes in.  We both needed a night of sleep to rejuvenate after a long and stressful labor (and subsequent c-section) and then an exhausting hospital stay so the first night home we supplemented.  I truly felt that if I gave her a drop of formula or stopped pumping for one evening, I would ruin our breastfeeding relationship, which was clearly not the case.  Supplementing can be a slippery slope, but as soon as we could exclusively breastfeed again the next day, we did!

It seems fitting that the theme of 2013's breastfeeding week is peer support.  I wish I had known Maggie in the earliest days of E's life.  She is a breastfeeding counselor and now one of my best friends.  Luckily I met her when E was four months old because she's been a source of wisdom ever since.

Once my milk did come in, I had oversupply issues on the right and my tiny E  just couldn't keep up. For four months I would feed her on one side then pump on the other, bottle feeding her the next time.  I remember hallucinating that the breast pump's rhythmic sounds were actual words and phrases in the wee hours of the night as a satisfied E went back to sleep and I stayed awake to pump!  She didn't start taking both sides until 5 months old and by then she could keep up.  Those four months were exhausting and again, solid advice could have helped our issue resolve sooner.



Regardless of our initial struggles, the work was worthwhile.  E breast fed for 16 months until she self-weaned when I became pregnant with Violet.

I need to add in the one day of time that Violet logged because she nursed!  What a celebrated feat that was among the other 24 months!  The doctors warned us she might not be able to eat and she didn't have the strength to keep up with it for long, but oh, on her birthday, how my sweet girl tried her best to get the best!  I will never, ever forget that amazing experience with my much missed baby.


Which brings us to D who is currently 8 months into nursing.  He started off strong right from the start.  I was more confident and experienced as a veteran breastfeeding mom.  My milk came in a day earlier with each baby so with my boy we had a supply before we were discharged from the hospital!  Just like E, he was exclusively breast fed for 6 months before we started any solids, but unlike E and V, he never had a drop of formula!  Yay!


The biggest piece of advice that I can give to new nursing moms is that your baby may fuss at the breast or go on nursing strikes or through growth spurts where they feed a lot, but most of the time it does not mean that you aren't making enough milk.  Trust your body, trust your baby, and let baby nurse, nurse, nurse.  The more time you spend working on it together, the more milk your body will produce!

The pictures you see here will be treasured forever!  Ronice of Ronice Kay Photography offered us a complimentary breastfeeding mini-shoot to check out her business.   We met at the park where it felt totally natural and beautiful to be feeding D as I always do.  Ronice was unintrusive as D and I nursed and interacted.  When I saw the photos that resulted, I was in tears and blown away by her work.  You can see more examples of other mommas breastfeeding their babies as well as other categories of shoots on the RKP website.

Ronice is an amazing momma who breastfed her daughter for 20 months before she self-weaned.  I really think that Ronice's special niche will be breastfeeding photography, though her talent is of course solid in every picture that she takes.  She's a unique photographer that can make you feel comfortable doing something as intimate yet natural as nursing in public.  Breastfeeding needs to be celebrated and capturing it forever in the ways Ronice does is truly priceless.


Ronice is now offering one local momma reader and baby a breastfeeding mini shoot of their own (approximately 20-30 minutes) with three favorite images then available as digital downloads with printing rights.  To enter, use the Rafflecopter below.  

I always have running mental list of the most interesting places that we've nursed in public.  With E it was the National Zoo and a closed, dark, quiet movie theater.  With D it's been a butterfly house so far!  In the comments, please tell me the most interesting place you've nursed in public!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Ronice Kay Photography offered us a complimentary breastfeeding mini-shoot for completing this review but, as always, all opinions and enthusiasm are 100% our own!

16 comments :

  1. I am done breastfeeding, but with Irelyn, we were house hunting for 6 months! I nursed her in a forclosed house (no power in it) with our realtor, in tow, while looking at this house.

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    1. That's a great one to remember! I'll never forget coming over in the early days of tiny Irelyn's life as you started your breastfeeding relationship!

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  2. On a ferris wheel ride while baby wearing! My son Jameson was in a moby type wrap and was hungry so he had lunch while going round and round!

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  3. I never thought to add up my breastfeeding months... 35 total!! I am very proud of myself and my girls. Pumping for my 28 weeker and then moving to EBF when she reached 40 weeks gestation, and continuing to breastfeed her to 19 months is probably the thing in life I'm the most proud of. It was hard, and I woke up several times a night while she was in the NICU to pump to keep my supply up, and I worked hard at her latch while she was learning to breastfeed, but she is an amazingly healthy, smart and compassionate girl now, and I think breastfeeding played a role in that. Still nursing my 16 month old - she is such a "num-aholic" (we call breastfeeding "nummies") that I think she'll be taking this habit to kindergarten...

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    1. Wendy, that gave me goosebumps! What awesome hard work and experiences! Your girls are lucky to have such a dedicated momma!

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  4. Thank you so much for sharing your experiences and for the kind words about my work! I think my favorite place I nursed in public was a Knoebels--even had my husband take a picture of us :) I am so excited to be offering nursing sessions now and can't wait to meet the momma who wins the giveaway! :)

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  5. Anyone else done "the hover" over the carseat on a long roadtrip? ;)

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    1. I have - I never thought to do it until we were on a trip and I saw someone in the car next to me in a traffic jam leaning over her baby, and I thought - is she breastfeeding? I still don't know, but I crawled in the backseat and nursed my 4 month old. thank goodness for big boobs, in this case!

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  6. What a great story! I wish I still had a nursling! Maybe I can win a session for #3 when the time comes. :) I have also nursed at Knoebels and Hersheypark, and at church, in restaurants, at work, while shopping...

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  7. I've nursed everywhere! I don't have a nursling right now, but I am looking forward to nursing #3 someday...

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  8. I have nursed EVERYWHERE.....Hershey park...grocery store....restaurant....parks....ANYWHERE my little lady needs fed she gets fed. Our strangest position lately has been the belly facing-Sitting up-While distractedly looking around the living room and sipping.....taking breaks to chat with daddy it brother.

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  9. Hands-down, my most interesting public nursing session was during the 4-D movie "Niagara's Fury", in Niagara Falls, Canada. Plastic poncho and everything. (it seemed easier than trying to leave the theater). Hubby realized what I was doing and took a picture, but we're really the only ones who can tell what the picture is!

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  10. I never answered your question - weirdest place nursing... I have to say it was a few weeks ago when I nursed my 16 month old during the entire tour of crystal cave out near Kutztown. she was in the mei-tai sling and I don't think anyone knew I was doing it!

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  11. Unusual...hum....Nothing stands out. But I have nursed all 5 of my children, the older 3 self weaned after they turned 4, and my 4th born until right before her 4th birthday. (Lots of 4's,in my post, ha ha) Our 5th and final child was born in March and I am enjoying every minute of his nursing.

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  12. I never thought to sit down & calculate the number of months I nursed so far, so I just did, 78 months and counting!!! So in that time, I've nursed anywhere & everywhere lol. I've done the hoover over the carseat thing (just took a pic this weekend lol), nursing while grocery shopping, cooking, you name it!

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