Breastfeeding triplets may sound like hard work, but I hope by sharing my own experience more mums of multiples will at least give it a try.
From around 20 weeks of pregnancy I was always told I would have my baby’s premature due to risks, that I would never get further than 34 weeks but could go into labour at anytime from 20 weeks. I made the decision to breast feed them when they were born. I made sure everyone from consultants the midwifes and everyone I could really talk too knew my choices.
I made sure it was also in my green notes as I have never breastfed any of my baby’s before this but I wanted to make the right choice for my 3 baby’s when born.
We got to 29 weeks and the decision was made to deliver them and after my section I made it clear to everyone of my choice but due to having morphine I wasn’t allowed to breastfeed for 24 hours much to my dismay. I refused any pain killers from then on. I awaited the 24 hours yet still nobody came to help with getting my milk moving so I called the midwife and explained what I wanted to do and also made it clear it was over 24 hours.
I wanted to start my milk production so off she went and got a syringe and showed me how to hand express. By this time my colostrum was going everywhere, she was a bit worried it was going to waste, so she called another midwife to get a breast torture chamber as I would call it.
I ended up with 2 full bottles of it, they seemed really excited about this but at the time I never really knew why until I was told it was a medicine to help their immune systems.
From that day on I decided while they were in SCUB I would express 2 hourly to keep my milk production going by day and 4 hours by night.
Then when they got to around 6 weeks old I was allowed to start putting them to my breast. At first it was quite difficult because of their size. I was scared of dropping the girls. I had to call for help getting them both out of their incubators as once one was out it would be hard getting the other.
I had couple of nurses showing me different positions till I found a comfortable position that suited me and the girls and from then on I tandem fed the girls and then would go to little man vise versa.
From that very first moment I put my baby’s to me I felt overwhelmed with great happiness I felt like I was able to be actually doing something for them. I felt like their mommy for the first time not this robot that cuddled them one by one. I had felt before that I needed permission to do anything with them, it was the greatest moment I had since having them.
From that day on I was told they were my baby’s I could do what I wanted so I would check daily when feeds were due and just took over. I would still ask the nurse to help until the baby’s went into cots. The nurse would sit with me an chat, make sure baby’s were latching correctly and jot down how long they fed for, which was a comfort to know that I was doing it correctly.
Then by the time the baby’s were 12 weeks old they were all home. I was on my own but I was happy with how we were progressing day by day. Although when my eldest twin came home she needed topping up slightly as she wasn’t latching as well as she did in hospital but after a week she soon got used to feeding an was on full breast after that i had no issues with any of them.
We soon knuckled down to a routine that suited us. If they awoke together I would always feed my little man first as he was a very fast feeder, then tandem feed the girls. If I was doing the school run I would give them a top up of milk before we left, if we went shopping I would do the same but sometimes they would wake before we got home. I would then have to feed them one by one while we were out.
I was dammed if I was gona feed my babys in some dirty smelly room, I fed them wherever I was. I managed this until 26 weeks but by week 25 I waz absolutly drained. I had one of 2 on me constant during the day and night. My Health Visiotr was due when babys got to 26 weeks for the big weigh in.
I explained our issues, she explained I had done a fab job lasting as long as I did with the 3 of them and not to feel hurt or upset if I wanted to stop. It wasn’t my fault and I should be very proud of myself, unfortunately my instincts were correct their wasn’t enough milk for them all to feed anymore. My body just couldn’t produce enough for 3 growing baby’s so I made the decision to put the girls on formula milk by day and breast at night.
I carried on breastfeeding my little man to keep the flow going during the day and night up until he hit 9 months.Then I made the decision to stop as he was constantly latched on. Luckily for me the girls were sleeping through the night, as hard as it was to give him a bottle through the night. I had too as I was lacking from sleep an was constantly tired, so I bought already made milk for the night and took the steam steraliser upstairs.
As he was stirring I would pour his milk and let him latch on then quickly removed my breast and gave him the bottle and for the first time I had a great nights sleep. I never looked back once.
If you have never breastfed or feared it like I did with my elder children fear not as it was the greatest experience of my life. Whether you manage a day or week or even a month or more, you gave it your best an that’s all that matters.
If you feel you need help don’t be afraid to ask ,the hospitals now have breast feeding advisers you can talk too. The nurses and midwifes an health visitors are also great support. They are all there to help.
This inspirational post was written anonymously by a mum who is either a member of my Facebook mums group, a Twitter follower or has been submitted to me via email. I have full permission to share her story. If you can relate to this post and would like to share your own anonymous post please contact me. You could help us share the blogs love to helping others by sharing via the social sharing buttons.