How I braved the ordeal of feeding my twins
As a mom of twins, the challenges of breastfeeding are completely different and no one in this world shares with you the basic things, which is extremely sad.
Right after giving birth by C-section, a mother doesn't start producing milk from the word go. As a practice, doctors do suggest mums to breastfeed from day 1, for the child to get used to suckling and mother's touch, but most new mothers don’t know how to feed properly, midwives help but in small hospitals, they take a very conservative approach of pressing the breasts so badly that one would like to die and would repent the decision of becoming a mother altogether! Sad but true. My daughter was taken to NICU in Fortis as she was of low birth weight but my son was in the same hospital as I was. For two days, I was not told that my daughter had been shifted to some other hospital so as not to make me anxious. I was told by the doctors that the milk doesn't get produced in the first 6 days for C-section deliveries. So after the initial colostrum feeding, my son too was formula-fed by the hospital staff even though he was occasionally brought to me for feeding. They didn’t even bother to tell me how much they fed. From day 3, the doctor advised me to atleast try expressing milk for my daughter and my family took it to the hospital where she was kept. Sadly, my daughter lost out on colostrum as she was in the NICU.
My early feeding days were a nightmare, thanks to those ill-trained midwives who used to press my breasts so badly that I used to cry out of pain. After 5 days, when I was back home, one of my relatives suggested me to apply ghee on my breasts and massage it as they had become extremely hard and milk was not coming out. Once I did that, I felt a bit relieved but I was still in pain while feeding them as they were unable to latch on properly. So, she suggested to me to buy an electric breast pump,which was really a god-sent device for me. She recommended that as one of the best methods to express milk without pain unlike the manual ones which you keep on pressing and end up gaining nothing. This device really helped me fight my breastfeeding woes to some extent.
But again, breastfeeding twins has its own set of challenges because when one is being fed, other one also wants to be fed. In my case, my mother-in-law and my husband used to hold both the babies in position to help me co-feed them. After sometime, I started expressing milk with the help of the device and started giving them top-feed on a regular basis.
Fighting depression at that time was difficult as you couldn’t venture out and I also didn’t have the help of digital devices for quite some time. So I had no option but to get hooked on to my mobile for getting updates. If Babychakra would have been there at that time, it would have been a bliss for sure, as I think this platform really helps women in fighting depression because young mothers can instantly network here for support and advice. In our case, our mothers never knew anything about the new age feeding practices, and we had no option but to listen to them. It took me almost a year or more to get out of the depression and the ideal solution for me was to start working again from home so that my mind was occupied in things that I enjoyed doing.
We also gave pacifiers to our babies because it was extremely difficult to keep my daughter away from suckling. She used to constantly suckle on me during her first year. My son got cold so he couldn't suckle as his nose was blocked, so he also got into the habit of taking pacifier. It's important to mention here that lots of people would come and give you their two bits of advice , when you are going through such problems, but you should do what is best for you and your baby, instead of following unsolicited advice blindly. Thankfully, kids were off pacifiers sooner than I expected. I am also happy that they don't have the habit of thumb sucking, which is extremely difficult to get rid of.
For me, this was definitely a huge learning experience but in case you are birthing twins, do seek support of a lactation consultant in advance.
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