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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Stan and Breastfeeding

Much has been written about the important role that dads play in ensuring breastfeeding success. In fact, BabyCenter Philippines has a good guide for new dads who want to play an active role in the breastfeeding relationship. On occasion of Father's Day, I'm writing a post for my husband, Stan, on how he helped me successfully overcome the early challenges of breastfeeding and continue to support me as I still breastfeed our 18month old toddler.

I gave birth away from home, without my family or yayas/helpers. It was only Stan who was present from Hour 1. Being my only assistant, he took over all diaper duties - with me just poking him every time Naima pees or poops. He also accompanied me during my visits with various lactation consultants. I was really surprised that he wasn't squeamish with talking about my breasts and participated actively during the consultation sessions.

Stan was my number one cheerleader. He kept me going during those days when I doubted myself, my milk supply, my capacity to soothe a wailing Naima. I have to admit that it wasn’t easy being married to me during those first 2 weeks. Even I couldn’t stand myself. I was irritable, weepy and not in the mood to talk to him. However, he kept quiet and took charge of bathing and singing to Naima.

I remember one night when I was pumping and spilled about 1 ounce of milk all over the floor. Stan had just dozed off when he heard me start to cry. He immediately jumped off the bed, comforted me and cleaned up the mess himself. I know that he must’ve gotten tired of hearing me complain all the time about me not pumping enough milk, Naima always wanting to nurse. But not once did he tell me to switch to formula and stop breastfeeding. He was just there listening and cheering me on.

Naima is now 18months old and I’m counting the days when I will hang up the horns. Stan and I have agreed that when Naima turns 2, I will stop pumping at work and just let Naima nurse whenever we are together. At the start of the breastfeeding relationship, I had a month-by-month success goal. Now, I’m on the countdown to the last 6 months (of pumping, at least). I really couldn’t have gone this long without Stan’s support. Naima and I are very lucky to have a patient, supportive, every smiling and good-natured Stanley in our lives.

Happy Father’s Day Stan and we love you! :D

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