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29.6.12

Skin to Skin and Breastfeeding {NBW}

I am a huge fan of skin to skin and with both boys had planned to have as much skin to skin as possible.
Charles was born in a birthing pool but had to be taken out and given oxygen so I didn't see much of him straight away. I also had to get out of the pool, onto a bed and hooked up to a drip because my uterus decided to not close properly so I was bleeding quite a bit, although thankfully once he'd had his oxygen we were able to have a quick skin to skin session before I handed him over to his daddy for cuddles and so I could get stitched up.
It wasn't the dreamy skin to skin moment I had hoped for but the birth went perfectly which made up for it.

With Harry we had the opposite. The birth wasn't too amazing although he made it out in one piece (thank goodness!) and was delivered straight onto my chest/tummy.
I will never, ever forget the feeling of a gunky, slimey, gooey mess that Harry was coated in. I LOVED IT. Ok, yes it was dirty I guess but it was natural stuff and I would be having a bath soon anyway...and was covered in all other kinds of muck that it didn't matter.

Within no time he was rooting and had his first breastfeed. It was wonderful. It was as I had always wanted.

The first two/three weeks were painful. Harry was lazy at latching and instead of latching properly would prefer for the milk to just pour into his mouth without him doing any work.
We spent a lot of nights having skin to skin to encourage him to latch, to know his way around, and just to get to know each other, to feel a really close bond and to reignite the positive feelings from the birth (probably the first time I've realised why I love skin to skin with him so much)
Within no time at all he was feeing really well and the pain had gone.
I think the skin to skin time helped massively.

Harry will be one next Thursday (although I am in denial) and we are still co-sleeping and still breastfeeding.
I aim for us to have skin to skin contact at least 3 nights a week. This has been especially helpful recently because I went through a couple of days last week when my milk supply seemed quite low.
The hot weather has increased my supply massively though thankfully.

I think personally that breastfeeding mums should have skin to skin time in their routine somewhere. I don't have a routine but we have co-sleeping to ensure our skin to skin time. If Harry was in his own room then I would set an hour or so of cuddle time to reconnect and have skin to skin with him.
You can't beat the feeling of being naturally close to your baby like that.