Mum's Journey: Introducing Liz and her Children
Hi everyone! My name is Liz, and I am the Digital Marketing Specialist here at Medela Australia. Lovely to e-meet you all. This article will focus on Medela, and how it helped me in my own personal breastfeeding experience.
I am a new addition to the Medela Family, and with me comes my experience in the Digital World, and my incredibly relatable experience of being a mum. I have three kids, Demi is 10, Leon is 8 and Louis is 6. Yes, they are all 22 months apart in age, and no, we didn’t plan it that way. It was obviously meant to be, because all three were born within 6 weeks of the other’s birthday.
Let’s talk about how I can actually relate to you mamas out there.
Yes, sure, it’s because I too am a mum, and that I know and work within the Medela brand that you use or are thinking of using. But also? I’m a mum who stayed home, working part time for almost 10 years so I could be with my kids, so I could breastfeed that little bit easier (stress and emphasis on that little bit easier part) and I know how hard it is having kids. The guilt you feel if you return to work, the jubilation you experience if you are lucky enough to stay home. I get it all because I have lived it all.
Kids are our lives, our light, our reason for getting up in the morning (literally. Show me a mum of a newborn who sets an alarm and watch me fall to the floor). But having them is a tricky business. My grandpa always said, “The bigger they are the bigger the problems.” But when you have a little baby in your arms and they will NOT STOP CRYING, it feels like there will be no bigger problem to cross your path, ever.
Breastfeeding is hard, it's indidvidual and we all have our own stories.
The one I will chat to you about is the one that brought Medela into my life, 10 years ago. This is the story about the night that was the final straw when it came to going-at breastfeeding alone.
Demi was about four weeks old. My supply was quite low because she was an incredibly lazy sucker. She’d snuggle into my boob, latch on like a Queen, then promptly fall asleep. Every. Single. Time. It did absolutely no favours for my supply and all it really did was frustrate me to tears every time she fed. Which was constantly, because she would fall asleep on my boob, wake up hungry, need a nappy change and we’d start all over again. A moment please for the mamas out there changing the nappy of an exclusively breastfed baby, who knew that colour even existed?!
It was exhausting. Enter, my Medela Swing Maxi Breast Pump. The one I had is different to the fabulous new one you can buy now, Those awards! You know this is going to be a great one.
but let me tell you something. Had it not been for that pump, my supply would have completely diminished, and I would have lost all hope when it came to breastfeeding. I started pumping between feeds, and mastering the angle of pumping on one side while Demi fed on the other. My boobs were tricked into thinking it was the baby stimulating them into creating more milk. I would put a warm face-washer on my chest, try to relax, put something easy to watch on TV and let the dulcet tones of the breast pump fill the air, and the bottle. After persevering for a week or two, I HAD A SUPPLY!! As time went on and Demi got older, the colic disappeared, and I had a baby receiving the nutrients of my very own liquid gold, gaining weight and feeding off my milk supply.
But there was also another key benefit to me getting a breast pump.
My husband could do some feeds 🙌. Winning. If you’ve ever been up at 3am for what feels like the millionth time, you will know you would do anything to have someone take your place for just one feed so you can get some sleep. Because let’s be real, a newborn could potentially be feeding for an hour at a time, and that ‘three hours between feeds’ business doesn’t start when the baby finishes the feed, it starts when the BABY STARTS THE FEED! If you can get more than an hour to yourself in between feeds, you are doing extraordinarily well. Don’t let the movies and other mum’s stories get you down, each baby is different. My lazy little sucker rarely gave me more than 45 minutes between feeds for a very long time, so you are definitely not alone.
That breast pump saved my sanity. Medela was my literal mental saviour. I was able to store enough milk for one feed throughout the night! Considering I could squeeze next to nothing out of my boobs prior to pumping, that was an amazing result. My husband Peter got involved, giving me the opportunity of getting some actual sleep and I got to sleep for 7 glorious hours 🙌
So thanks Peter 😉
Dads often feel like they can't be involved.
What they can do though for some bonding time is get involved in bath time, they can watch them do tummy time and they can change a nappy (note to dads, feel free anytime). That’s about it really. Feeding the baby is something truly special, something you need to experience to understand. My kids all have big brown eyes and long lashes, (lucky them, just scroll back up to the photos). When they look up at you your heart just melts. The no-teeth and bald head get me every single time. It’s amazing that tiny little creature that relies so heavily on you came out of your body and needs you to survive. When dad can have that same feeling of being loved and needed, why would you not give it to him? Because chances are that baby was born looking like a dead ringer of him 😒
Hitting my breastfeeding issues head on made me a more relaxed, fun mum, and so when I fell pregnant again, and again, I knew I had this. My boys must have sensed how chill I was from the start because they were champion eaters. Now, not so much. They can never find their shoes but put a speck of green on their dinner plates? They’re Sherlock. 🕵️♀️
Something to note here is that all three of my kids are very different. They have been from the day they were born. Demi was a good sleeper from quite a young age, Louis crept into my bed just last night. Leon has been too cool for school from the second he was born, and to this day not a whole lot gets to him. Your baby is born with a personality, let them show it to you!
Starting to work here at Medela feels like kismet, they really did help me when I needed it, and they didn’t even know it. 💛
What I would like to do with this Mum Stories section of our blog is talk to you mums. Talk to you about motherhood, about breastfeeding, about how Medela has or is about to help you. Let’s start a conversation and be there for each other. It does indeed take a village, but do you know what the new world version of that is? It takes a social media community.
Get ready for a collection of new blog posts headed your way over the coming weeks.
We’re going to keep it real, we’re going to keep it relatable and most of all, we’re going to make you smile. Babies and breastfeeding are hard. Going at it alone is even harder. We’ve got you mamas.
Liz, her munchkins who made this story possible, and the Medela Australia Team xx