My daughter was born prematurely at 35 weeks by caesarean, she weighed 2410g at birth.
We were very lucky and got pregnant after our first round of IVF after 2 years of trying to conceive. My wary pregnancy was uneventful but we new early that my placenta was low and that a natural birth wasn’t a possibility. Three bleeds and stays in hospital later and we were admitted for a emergency c section. She was taken straight to neonatal as I was taken to recovery.
A little later a lovely midwife came to show me how to express and collect my colostrum which later we took to give her. I continued to express and take what I could produce to her as often as I could but this was super difficult as I felt awful and found recovery really difficult especially with so little support and no visitors due to covid.
A nurse spoke to me about which formula we’d like to use to top up her as she needed more than I could produce early doors. All her milk was given through a tube early on so I was expressing every 3hrs and we then topped her up with formula to make up the amount that she needed. As time went on this became less formula and more breast milk. Which was amazing and felt great, at that sort of time we then started to transfer to breastfeeding fully.
We continued breastfeeding only occasionally topping up with formula over the early weeks but as time went on this became less and less. We breast fed solely till roughly four months when I started thinking about going back to work. We choose to try and reintroduce the formula gradually replacing one feed at a time for the day time feeds. This choice was down to ease and wanting to continue breastfeeding.
Now this was not a quick or easy process, introducing one feed and doing it for a week then adding another. This was not popular with her and she initially didn’t drink much or sometimes any but with gently offering it each day at the same time and doing it slowly she gradually got used to it and began taking the bottle well and in time for me to return to work she was having three 7oz bottles a day and a breastfeeding early morning, evenings and through the night.
We got some advice from family and friends and I did a little reading online but I took what I liked and what worked for us and gave it a go. This worked for us as a family really well and has eased the transition into work and nursery.
Combination feeding isn’t for everyone but it worked and I have appreciated breastfeeding for as long as I could.
Chloe x x x