Mama Chat Monday With - SOPHIE KEOGH
Meet Sophie, Wife and Mama of two raising her gorgeous kids in the Bay of Plenty,taking photos along the way. Have a look at her lovely feed over on Instagram @sophie.at.home.nz.
Thanks so much Sophie for sharing your journey.
1.Tell us the first word that comes to mind when you think of your feeding journey?
Perseverance! I really enjoyed breastfeeding my first child Kian, but it was full of challenges. Firstly I struggled just getting him to latch on. It took a week of switching between bottle and boob and trying different holds before we finally got the hang of it. Then came the sore nipples, mastitis and cluster feeding. At 8 months he started refusing my right side (I think he was frustrated with the slower flow). At around a year old and now down to one feeding boob he bit me so bad that it got infected. Feeding a toddler with a near full set of teeth on an open wound is no joke! When he was 15 months old I found out I was pregnant. I began suffering from nausea and terrible aversion when I fed him. It was the worst feeling to be holding my son while he fed and all I wanted to do was run away. I used to love sitting in the evening holding him while he fed to sleep but now I sat there with gritted teeth. I had been open to tandem feeding when the baby arrived but in the end I decided it wasn't for me. When I was about 12 weeks pregnant my milk began to dry up. My once enthusiastic feeder was losing interest and feeding him to sleep no longer worked. I finally took this opportunity to stop. There were tears at first (not just his!) but I have to admit I was relieved to finally wean him. When I reflect back now I think we were lucky that although it was a challenge we had the right help and support and we were always able to keep going.
2.What best describes the way you feed your child/children?
I breastfed my son Kian until 18 months and currently breastfeeding my 6 month old, Edie.
3.Did you ever feel embarrassed bottle-feeding or breastfeeding in public?
At first I felt a little embarrassed feeding in public. I took my Mum with me the first time to help me keep covered up! With Edie I have mastered feeding in a sling so most of the time nobody even knows I'm feeding.
4.Are there anything that made your feeding journey easier?
With Edie I couldn't live without my sling, she loves her meals on wheels and it means I can feed hands free while running after a toddler!
5.If you could give a new mum one piece of advice what would it be?
Do your research and be informed about feeding and normal newborn behaviours. Also, if you need advice always ask for help. There were many things that Kian did, like cluster feeding or not wanting to be put down that made me worry there was something wrong with me, my boobs or Kian, only to find out in most cases it's very normal.
6.Do you think mothers feel pressure from society regarding feeding? Yes/No If yes why?
Yes I think we all feel a lot of pressure and I think we put a lot of pressure on ourselves as well. Unfortunately we all get judged at some point on how we feed our babies. For me it is really important to mother the way that feels natural for me and be confident in my choices. If I feel confident then the pressure and judgement is easier to brush off.
7.What do mums need to do more of to support other mums?
Talk, share and encourage each other. I find it so helpful to talk to other Mums. Little bits of advice or encouragement mean so much or just to know they are going through the same or have been through the same as me.