MothersBabies Newsletter:
Footy Hold, Milk Spray and Tongue Ties
My Personal Breastfeeding Story


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A bit of a different newsletter this week…

I wanted to share with you one of my own, personal experiences… My breastfeeding story.
I’m Clare, nutritionist and professional violinist (weird combo, I know!), and I’m the writer behind MothersBabies articles, newlsetters and social media.

I have two daughters, now 7 and 4 and, whilst my breastfeeding journey ended a couple of years ago now, the experience has really stuck with me.

I was 32 when I had Greta. I had always planned to breastfeed. I was in the thick of my Nutrition degree when I fell pregnant, and I knew all about how amazing breastmilk and breastfeeding was for both my baby, and myself.
What I didn’t know was just how hard breastfeeding could be! Sure, people had mentioned that ‘it isn’t easy for everyone’ but I just *knew* that I would find it easy…

I was wrong. So wrong.
Greta was born with a tongue tie and I seemed to produce way more milk than she needed. She couldn’t latch very well, and when she did, she basically drowned in milk. 

I am short and little and found some of the breastfeeding holds suggested by the numerous lactation consultants I visited incredibly uncomfortable…The ‘footy hold’ felt like a difficult yoga position! At some point, I worked out that lying down was the best option…an incredibly awkward time when I was at dinner parties!

Possibly due to her poor latch, or maybe just because she’s always been a foodie at heart, Greta ‘clusterfed’ from about 5pm-9pm every night…Whilst the benefit of this was that she slept amazingly well through the night, it did incapacitate me at quite an inconvenient time of the day!!
On one occasion, Greta unlatched just as I had a letdown, and a stream of milk sprayed my sister in the face!! Whilst hilarious in those particular circumstances, it did make me quite nervous about breastfeeding in public, for obvious reasons!!

On top of all this, Greta absolutely refused to take a bottle (a fact which she now proudly announces to anyone who will listen). Being a Type A personality, I believed I could train her if I practiced bottle-feeding with her every day, but she wouldn’t have a bar of it!! I was working with Melbourne Symphony Orchestra during this time (yep, I’m a nutritionist AND a professional violinist) and my parents had to come to the city with Greta during rehearsals so that I could feed her in the breaks!

Why Am I Telling You All This?
I am definitely not trying to terrify you with this story, or turn you off breastfeeding! After about 6 months of practice, Greta and I got it together, and I breastfed happily and easily until she was about 18 months. My 2nd daughter, Beatrix, was a dream to feed…no cluster-feeding, took the bottle if needed, breastfed every 3-4 hours and never had latching troubles…

The reason I’m sharing this experience with you is to show you how powerful an understanding of the benefits of breastfeeding were to me. 

I did not consider quitting. 

I went weekly to a local, free, council-run lactation clinic and sat there getting tips on breastfeeding. I tried nipple covers, different positions, ‘pre-milking’ to reduce flow…I did a LOT of googling…And we got there. I am grateful that I was empowered with the scientific knowledge to back up my goals, to help me stick with it through the tough times… because, in the end, it was the best decision for me and my girls.

For more information on the wonders of breastmilk and baby immunity, check out Module 7, where we have shared the science on the ‘magical’ ingredients in breastmilk, why the first four months are so critical for your bub’s microbiome development, and whether or not you should be considering probiotic supplements during this time.


A Disclaimer Note:
This is my story…just one individual. 
Whilst we know that breastfeeding and breastmilk has many health benefits, we also know that it’s not always possible for every woman and baby, and that is ok. 
MothersBabies is here to empower women, and that includes helping women optimise their microbiome, and their baby’s microbiome. Breastfeeding is one way you can help do this, but there are many other things to consider too!


Or check out our Pregnancy Bundle, here. 



The information in this newsletter is provided for general educational purposes only.

Statements or opinions expressed in the newsletter should not be taken as fact, but as opinion on the current state of evidence based science. The content is not (and should not be taken to be) medical advice or an endorsement or recommendation of any specific product or treatment. 

If you require medical attention please seek professional advice from an appropriately experienced health practitioner.


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