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Cramp and a lesson in breastfeeding!

Friday, 29 April 2016  | 

Cramp and a lesson in breastfeeding!

Phew! A lot has happened this week. I don’t think I’ll be able to fit it all into one post so I’ll save some bits for next week!

On Saturday we had our last NCT session, which was all about breastfeeding. Instead of our usual NCT leader, it was with a specialist breastfeeding counsellor. We watched quite a few videos of how babies instinctively know how to breastfeed and how to get good attachment/latch. We also learnt about which cues from baby to look out for when they are signaling that they need a feed. This was all very useful.

Unfortunately, it was all presented in a rather simplistic, unrealistic way. There was no room for ‘real life’ and an expectation that as mothers we would all be there, ready to feed, at every moment. Expressing and bottle feeding were discouraged, and I felt that the poor dads were rather sidelined, because, well, they don’t have boobs and expressing was discouraged! The argument was that breast milk is specially designed for the specific time of day it is produced, and changes throughout the day and night, so expressed milk is less effective. I understand that, but sometimes it simply isn’t practical to be there and it would be nice for the men to be involved in that aspect of their child’s care too.

Anyway, enough of that rant! I’ve also got to the point this week where I’ve been totally fed up with being woken in the night (often repeatedly) with cramp in my calves. I asked Twitter for any ideas of how I could prevent it and (amongst other things) a banana before bed and drinking tonic water were suggested. So the night before last I tried a banana before bed, and yesterday I bought a bottle of tonic water and had a glass of that in the evening. I’ve also been getting hubby to rub my calves before we go to sleep. Well, it might just be fluke but I’m pleased to report that I’ve been cramp-free for the past two nights!

It’s made a huge difference having less disrupted sleep for the past 48 hours (although I’m still up several times in the night to go to the toilet, but that’s less painful!) and I’ve felt the benefit. I’ve been at work today though and I must say I’m feeling cream crackered! I’m working again tomorrow but after that I’m only doing one day a week for the next two weeks, and then I’ll actually be on maternity leave! How surreal…!

 

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