Sunday, March 11, 2007

Welcome to the March Carnival of Breastfeeding!

Ah...Advice. Pregnant women are a walking target for little old ladies, frazzled moms and single frat boys with a baby sister who all want to share a nugget of baby care wisdom. And by the 6th month of pregnancy you are ready to strangle the next person who offers their heartfelt piece of baby advice. I have been pregnant three times and nursed three times (including right now) so I have unfortunately had my fair share and then some of pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding advice. This month's Breastfeeding Carnival is about breastfeeding advice: the good, the bad and the ugly.

In my experience....
The worst: From a single guy who worked with my sweet hubby, while at a wedding with my young baby in a sling. Is she sleeping through the night? It's all about sleeping through the night. Once she's sleeping through the night everything will be perfect. I just nodded, smiled and ate another piece of cake. From time to time I imagine that young guy married, up with their baby at 3 am, hopefully reading and realizing that whether or not your baby is sleeping through the night is completely irrelevant to the rest of your parenting or baby growing up.

The best: All the great advice I have gotten from other mothers at La Leche League meetings over the past six years. A breastfeeding support group is the BEST place to get the advice and support you need to keep going and realize that you are not crazy. There is always someone who you can give advice to and always someone who's advice will help you know where to look for answers next. Some gems over the years: "He will eventually be able to drink out of a cup without a no spill top. Don't worry.", "You can night wean and still breastfeed and still cosleep.", "Don't worry about what other people say." I learned about Little Duck from Twelve Corners - easily the BEST baby diaper rash/all purpose balm of all time at my local LLL group. That ALONE was worth it, trust me. Six years later, I still have Little Duck in my house! It doesn't matter how long I go, I always learn something new from the mamas young and old(er)who share at these mother-to-mother meetings.

So advice isn't all bad, it isn't all good. I guess part of being a mom is learning how to weed through it. How to let the bad advice pass through your ears and not let it take root. And to take the good advice and use it to do your own research and see if it will work for your family. My advice to you: TRUST your baby and yourself. Your God-given mama instincts and your connection to your baby are the only semblance of a map you have in this crazy treasure hunt we call life.

So be blessed by the luck-o-the-breastfeedin' mamas as you check out the other posts today. Tanya at the Motherwear Blog shares a long list of good and bad advice; Angela at Breastfeeding 1-2-3 shares how to navigate the medical advice in regards to breastfeeding; Jennifer at the Black Breastfeeding Blog shares the best breastfeeding advice she ever got; Cairo Mama gives some advice to get you through the rough spots, especially after an unexpected birth outcome; Andi at Mama Knows Breast shares who to get advice from and a little mother-to-mother advice; the mama at The Twinkies shares Brestfeeding wisdom from the Trenches; Jennifer over at The Lactivist gives one much needed and hard to find advice for pumping moms; the mama at Random Wonderings shares her "ugly" advice from a disappointing breastfeeding experience; and the Mum across the pond at BreastfeedingMums Blog shares good advice/bad advice and C-A at The Baby Gravy Train shares the best advice she was given as a new breastfeeding mom.

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