Posted 11-27-2013 at 08:06 AM by yoliyoda
It’s been awhile since I’ve had the effort and energy to doll myself up–hair, nails, and makeup. However, now it has been almost 4 months and now I’m getting back into the swing of things. But, some beauty routines simply have to change to adapt to my little one. While I had already thought that my large hoop earring would have to be shelved until further notice, there was another aspect of my beauty routine that I hadn’t thought of changing until recently: my nail polish.
Like many breastfeeding mamas, at times I find it necessary to stick my index finger between my little one’s gums, into his mouth, to break his suction on my nipple. Until recently I had only thought of my hands simply needing to be clean, not toxin free. I recently did a cute style on my nails. I was admiring them when the smell of chemicals hit me. It wasn’t until the first time after that when I placed my finger in him mouth did I wonder what my polish might taste or feel like to my little man.
So just what is in nail polish anyway? Every brand has different recipes, but most include “film forming agents, resins and plasticizers, solvents, and coloring agents” (DiscoveryHealth). One of the main ingredients is nitrocellulose. Guess where else you can find this ingredient? Dynamite.
In terms of plasticizers and resins, you might find amyl and butyl stearate, castor oil, glycerol, fatty acids and acetic acids. Butyl Stearate is a known irritant. Acetic Acid can be used to treat ear infections, but hasn’t been study for use in patients under the age of 3. Glycerol can be “ taken by mouth for weight loss, improving exercise
Posted 11-14-2013 at 12:48 PM by yoliyoda
I have to applaud the island country of Jamaica. They are in discussion for banning the advertising of infant formula to the general public. Dr. Kenneth Russell of UNICEF says that for the “big picture”, the standing ban on advertising of formula in Jamaica needs to be observed. He says that it’s about producing healthy children.
Jamaica is one of the many countries that took seriously the International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes. Adopted by The World Health Organization, the document says that companies which produce breastfeeding substitutions should not promote their wares to the general public or give free supplies and gifts to mothers and healthcare workers, or prompt themselves in hospitals. Breastfeeding substitutions include both formula and bottles. Companies also have to be careful about the language the actually put on their products. They have to clearly state the dangers of their product and and no use ‘dreamy’ idealized language to describe their it.
In the introduction of the piece, the WHO cited The Twenty-seventh World Health Assembly from 1974, noting “the general decline in breast-feeding in many parts of the world, related to sociocultural and other factors including the promotion of manufactured breast-milk substitutes, and urged ‘Member countries to review sales promotion activities on baby foods to introduce appropriate remedial measures, including advertisement codes and legislation where necessary’ “
Bravo for every country that sticks up for the benefits of breastfeeding! While I have used formula to supplement, I love breastfeeding. My love-bunny (when he grows up don’t tell him that I called him his nickname in public) breastfeeds more than he doesn’t. And while the US does have some regulations on what companies that produce breastfeeding replacements can and can’t do, in perspective I don’t think that they’ve done enough.
Posted 11-8-2013 at 01:15 PM by yoliyoda
“Exclusively breastfed”. It’s two words that when placed together create a golden ideal for some mothers. Many of us read the research about the benefits of breastfeeding our children exclusively for the first 6 months and then continuing afterwards for the first year or beyond. So many of us start with the idea that we can do it. We don’t think about the fact that life happens, issues arise, and something just might get in the way of the best laid plans.
Many mothers may find themselves in the position that I was in: formula in the fridge. I had a hungry baby and supply issues that just weren’t going to be solved overnight. I did what I had to do for my son at the time. However, just one sip of one bottle took him out of the “exclusively breastfed” club. It was devastating on so many levels, and for a short time I wondered if my breastfeeding efforts were still worth the results. Very rarely do we read about the benefits of supplementing. It can leave a mother feeling it’s all or nothing.
However, there is hope on the horizon. Often articles do a clean-cut comparison to show the dramatic differences between breastfed and formula-fed babies by citing the statistics on exclusively breastfed babies. It might be that many scientist only include exclusively breastfed babies in their research because there are too many factors for babies that are supplemented–factors that might skew the outcome, or make result subjective (such as how much formula they have, what time of day, what brand, ect.) But remember, the wording of the studies and statistics don’t null and void the benefits of some breast milk over none at all.
There simply needs to be more research done into the benefits of supplementing over exclusively formula-feeding. The information published prompting breastfeeding should speak to the mass experience of mothers. The truth is that according to the CDC, in the US 76.5% of babies
Posted 10-29-2013 at 11:51 AM by yoliyoda
Yes, I do cover-up when breastfeeding in public. I’m probably going to inflict the wrath of some of my fellow milky-mommies by admitting this, but I believe if able, all moms should cover up when in public.
Now, before the anger boils up, let me be clear: I do think that it is my right and prerogative to breastfeed in public. I don’t go hiding in a corner, or feeding my baby in a bathroom. If the location we’re in has no nursing facilities I sit right where I am and “whip it out”… I just also “cover it up”.
I don’t consider it an issue of embarrassment, or being shy about the human body and natural functions. Nor do I live in fear of what the law might say. In fact, I’m proud to live in a state that has a breastfeeding statute on the books. It’s just that sometimes I think in society today we get so focused on our “rights” and not on what is right.
I want my son to grow up to be a man who takes care of himself and those he loves. So how can I be shy about taking care of his very basic need to eat while in public? I want him to see the human body and all of it’s functions as beautiful. So why should I act like breastfeeding is anything but beautiful. In the same breath I want him to be considerate of other humans. While I think it is my right to breastfeed in public, I acknowledge that it might make others feel uncomfortable. It isn’t about if they should feel that way–the fact is that they do. As a caring human being I believe that I should acknowledge that. If there is something that I can do without hurting myself and my baby, why shouldn’t I? I wonder how I can tell him he should be empathic without trying to be the same myself.
Posted 10-29-2013 at 09:25 AM by yoliyoda
Even though you are always on my heart and mind–it’s even the more so in October. This is the month that a whole nation takes a moment to think about the disease that almost took you from my life too soon.
Breast Cancer almost denied you of seeing me graduate, get married, and have your grandson. It almost took you out of my son’s life before he got a chance to know you. This beast almost took my confidant, human reality check, biggest cheerleader, and best friend.
You may not always understand why I chose some of the parenting techniques that I do. Cloth diapers seem like more work. Attachment parenting doesn’t seem structured enough. And breastfeeding, well, that seems like an unnecessary challenge.
But, you’re one of my inspirations for so many of my parenting decisions–especially breast feeding. You remind me every chance you get that cancer, especially breast cancer, runs in our family. You tell me to get my mammograms, do my monthly check up, and always follow up with the doctor. However, those aren’t the only things that I can do.
Posted 10-28-2013 at 08:43 AM by yoliyoda
Is there such a thing as a breastfeeding bully? A recent article in Australia’s paper The Morning Bulletin had my head spinning to realize that not only do they exist–some of them should know better.
In the article the mother of a child in the ICU at the Wakiato Hospital in Australia was not given meals because she did not breastfeed. She was directly told that the reason that she only received toast for breakfast and nothing else was because the hospital only provided extra meals to mothers of children in the ICU that breastfeed. The mother indicated that for her own medical reasons she decided not to breastfeed. She also indicated that she didn’t want to leave her child alone in the ward while she went to the cafeteria to get food. The Southern District’s Health Board said that the long standing policy was put into place to encourage mothers to breastfeed.
Ouch. Can you said “overkill”?
Posted 10-2-2013 at 02:45 PM by yoliyoda
Sometimes I think people focus on the negative too much. I know that occasionally I am guilty of that. The first time I was breastfeeding exclusively I was stubborn when issues arose. How could I not be producing enough milk for my son? People were wrong to tell me I was having supply issues. I wasn’t having issues, they were. At least that’s what I thought.
Then one day a very wise advisor told me it wasn’t about me, it was about my son. If he wasn’t getting enough milk and it was affecting his health I basically needed to stop being selfish and supplement while I worked on my supply.
I cried and cried. How could I not be providing enough for my son? I felt like a failure. But I realized my son needed more at the moment than I was producing. So I provided the bottle, put on a strong face, and hoped no one would notice how crushed I felt. And that feeling of being a ‘bad mom’ was a bigger problem than a bottle ever could be.
Recently I read an article about Christie Chisha. She is a 63-year-old grandmother in Zambia who started lactating so she could take care of her grandchildren after her daughter died three days after giving birth. Unable to afford formula for the twins, in an act of desperation she placed the twins to her breast. And while she has begun to lactate, she isn’t providing enough milk. Too poor to buy formula, and without government assistance, the twins are malnourished. She wishes she could produce the amount of milk I could, or even provide the formula supplement I have access too.
Posted 09-30-2013 at 02:12 PM by yoliyoda
Beyond focusing on the recommended eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day, some mothers are attempting to down mother’s milk tea or a malted drink to increase milk supply. This combination can leave a woman attempting to drink about 64 ounces, or half a gallon, give or take.
No wonder I’ve felt like a water balloon! Before becoming pregnant I had a hard time drinking this much fluid. To be honest I have yet to get all of it down since I started breastfeeding. The new pressures of motherhood haven’t made it easier. I didn’t remember to shower regularly for the first 6 weeks, much less to have a glass of water.
Realizing how important it is to keep hydrated, I did a little research by looking into how others with a vested interest, like patients with certain medical conditions, drink their needed fluids daily. Figuring this out would help beyond breastfeeding, but benefit my own personal health for years to come. Here are some of the information I found to help me towards meeting this goal.
The International Kidney Stone Institute suggests having a glass during transitional times in the day–basically in harmony with routine activities like getting up, for example. Breastfeeding moms could add drinking a glass to their routine of feeding or pumping.
Another great suggestion was to dilute fruit juice to a 50:50 solution. I especially liked this suggestion because I frankly get bored drinking plain water, but love a glass of grape juice! Adding water to a glass of 100% juice would have little effect on the taste.
Posted 09-27-2013 at 11:46 AM by yoliyoda
Recent figures released from the US Department of Human and Health Services indicates that only about 55% of African American women attempt to breastfeed their child. It’s actually a figure that is up for the 35% in the 1970s. The specific areas with the lowest numbers come from the South. Unfortunately the figures don’t surprise me.
I am an African American woman living in the Southeast. To be clear, my family background is actually Caribbean, but I was born in the states. The difference may seem slight, but often when it comes to ideology “Caribbean American” doesn’t always equal “African American”. By my own experience, this is often the case in the view of breastfeeding, usually more accepted and prevalent among my Caribbean female friends.
It’s been hard for me to find breastfeeding role models within my own ethnicity. That really isn’t a priority to me, but I do find it troublesome. With the proven benefits of breastfeeding including lower risk of childhood obesity and diabetes, and lowering risks of cancer for the mother–all things that plague the African American community–I’m left wondering why so few of us are taking advantage of the obvious.
Then again, maybe it’s not so obvious. I consider myself an educated woman, yet I didn’t know about all the benefits until I got pregnant. There was no bases of experience, or voices of encouragement, trumpeting the joys of breastfeeding to me. And I understand part of the reason: before the years of La Leche League many women, some of whom were not only in the healthcare profession, but specifically OB-GYN nurses, found the art of breastfeeding mystifying. When the change in mindset came, and help started to emerge for woman who wanted to breastfeed, it didn’t trickle down to the African American community so easily. Let’s be honest: when many had little or subpar health care for themselves, they’d be hard pressed to find someone, anyone, that could help them demystify breastfeeding. My mother was one of women lost in the shroud. She tried and failed, with no support, to breastfeed. She didn’t even know there was support available.
Posted 09-23-2013 at 04:23 PM by yoliyoda
How much is the ability to use your hands worth? For a woman who pumps breast milk often, that question is more than a hypothetical. When I started to pump it was the thing I hated the most about breastfeeding: sitting for 10 to 15 minutes unable to do anything but hold two flanges to my breast. It made my arms ache, and I spent the hold time making a mental list of the things that I could be doing if I had use of my hands. I couldn’t imagine the women who pumped 30 minutes at a time!
Suppose a woman pumps every two hours for about 10 minutes. She could easily spend a minimum of 40 minutes a day incapacitated. That is over 4 ½ hours a week, and over 18 ½ hours a month. The things I could imagine doing with 18 hours. It was downright irritating!
I found that I gradually slid from pumping for 15 minutes, to pumping for 10. Eventually I started looking to see if there was a river or a trickle, and when it was less than impressive I’d stop pumping earlier than the 10 minutes. These are not the habits of a woman who would successfully build her supply through pumping. I knew that there had to be a way of dealing with the idiotic design flaw of a double pump which would allow me to increase the amount of time I pumped.