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pregnancy

How to Survive Cluster Feeding ❤

SJ is over three months now and still breastfeeding like a champ. Most days are pretty easy with our feeding schedule, but it was not always that way. 

We’ve had a few stumbling blocks occur, but by far the most challenging has been cluster feeding. Around three weeks, SJ started eating ALL DAY…I mean all day. One day he literally ate from 12:30-11:30 PM. If I pulled him off my boob, he would scream and scream until I put him back on. That day was a rarity, but most evenings for the first month he would eat pretty much non-stop from 6:00 PM into the night. For all of the reading and research I did to prepare me for an infant, nothing I read came close to preparing me for that phase. So, I did some research very quickly and asked a few people for guidance. 

Here are a few of the best pieces of advice I received to help me through cluster feeding:

1. Drink A TON of water (literally.) It’s hard to remember to do anything for yourself those first few weeks. This is not only for you, but baby as well. The more hydrated you are the better off your milk supply will be. 

2. Have snacks on hand. You will be starving. Make sure to have healthy snacks that will help boost your milk supply. My go-to is Nature Valley Oat Bars (oats can help increase your supply.)

3. Make your significant other do everything else. Laundry needs washed? You need to make dinner? Carpets need vacuumed? Kids need baths? Make them do all of that. It’s hard enough to help keep a little human alive. You don’t need to feel guilty about neglecting household duties too.

4. Baby is doing this for two reasons – they’re growing and they’re helping to boost your milk supply. A lot of women tend to think that they’re not providing enough milk around this time and start giving formula because they think baby is still hungry. If you do this, you could end up actually hurting your supply! 

5. Remember that this is just a phase. The most important thing to remember. I almost gave up, especially on the day where he ate for 11 hours straight. Luckily, I had women to call who would listen to me cry and give me encouragement. My husband was a big cheerleader during this time too. 

You will make it through, mama. I’m giving you a big virtual hug and a giant thumbs up for your selflessness and love ❤

A picture of my guy. His shirt says it all. 

My Experience With Placenta Encapsulation

There are many societies and cultures throughout the world that have different methods for consuming a woman’s placenta after she gives birth. To me, it’s a very logical thing to do because it essentially contains nine months worth of nutrients. 

Now, I am not all about eating it raw or cooking it to consume, but when I did my research on placenta encapsulation I was really intrigued at the benefits it boasted. 

I found a woman in my town that had great references to complete the process. Once I had my little guy, she was at the hospital within 30 minutes to pick up the placenta (I informed my nurses that I wanted my placenta saved in a cooler.) And she had it returned to me before I even left the hospital. 

She provided me with 110 capsules with instructions on the bottle for proper consumption as well as a tincture bottle to use after the pills were gone. Everyone’s placenta is a different size, so 110 is not a defining number for how many pills you get. 

I don’t have anything prior to base my experience with placenta encapsulation, but for me there were many positives! 

  1.  Good milk supply – I had no issues with supply and my milk came in the night I was home from the hospital. 
  2. No “baby blues” – I can’t say I was without tears the first month, but that was related to SJ crying for hours with reflux. I feel like I’ve had a lot of friends talk about feeling sad or alone, but I never felt that way thankfully! 😊
  3. Helped with postpartum bleeding – Again, I have no comparison but my symptoms were pretty light those first few weeks.
  4. Boosted energy – I think this is the greatest benefit I experienced! I was tired from middle of the night feedings, but once I took my pills for the day I had the energy to keep up with my two older boys and get things done around my house. I forgot to take them a couple days and could notice a definite difference in my energy level.

If you have ever considered this during your current pregnancy or for your next one, please research it! And as always, I can answer questions relating my experience 😁

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