The Villain in my breastfeeding journey

Let me go back to the time when i was starting to breastfeed,  my early term (37 weeks and 4days) baby girl had a hard time latching on me due to my inverted nipples. I sought help from a lactation consultant whom i met in our house in Manila had to travel back to Manila from Angeles,Pampanga 3rd day post partum. Both my breasts were already engorged i can remember the visible veins on my breasts which made it even harder for the tiny mouth of my baby to latch on me. During the 4-hour home visit my baby didn’t latch on me i was left with heavy breasts that felt they were about to explode anytime soon. I was advised that i need to pump to empty my breasts so that my baby can latch on. Contrary to a baby’s latch is the most effective and efficient way to empty our breasts thus establishing our supply. Because breastfeeding works on “Law of Supply and Demand” .Whilst frequent pumping will work in protruding my inverted nipples.

So i ended up buying the Medela Swing Maxi Double electric pump which is Php 13,500. On top of this i was advised to use Nipple Shield (Php 855 pair) to help address my inverted nipples which without batting an eyelash added to my cart. Then we were advised to get breast milk donation but was forewarned that the donors of those breast milk weren’t screened. My thinking then was out of desperation, i would get the breast milk holding on to the feeling that no mother would give something harmful to her own. When we get to the Medela House I was sales talked about Calma bottles that i need those to simulate a mommy’s breast and milk flow and then eventually my baby would latch on me which were all LIES. My baby got used to bottle feeding and refused my breasts even more. I would pump religiously getting less than an ounce of milk na napupunta lang sa paligid ng bote dahil sa napakakonti dahil my breasts weren’t stimulated by my baby’s latch until at one point i thought my milk was gone. I came to a corner that i want to give up breastfeeding because despite our empty pockets (had to pay the LC 1,500/hour rate, the consultation lasted for 4hrs, we paid 4,500php 1hr was free na daw), we spent Php17,905 our baby still wont latch. But iam eternally thankful and grateful to a lot of moms who shared their precious breastmilk to my daughter while i was trying to “up my supply” through pumping which is not sustainable. I will be always thankful to the mommies whom Pippa and I have cross nursed with to help evert my nipples and stimulate my supply. But only then that i sought for other help from mom and baby support that really paved the way to be successful in breastfeeding. These will be my forever regrets- buying a Medela pump thinking they are the enablers in breastfeeding with all their gadgets only to find out they are violators of Milk Code. My daughter’s father remorse the thought that breastfeeding is free, because there are professionals who are making expensive and worst not for all mothers who wants to breastfeed.  Let me say this again, SAVE your breasts, LEARN Hand expression.

Talk about where I’m coming from, it’s very deep and very hurtful to recount my early horror days when i was pumping and I’m truly hoping that no more family will be put in this nightmare and embrace the simplicity and blissful breastfeeding.

So how i started my beautiful days of breastfeeding? I was given a chance to attend a breastfeeding moms support group of Arugaan for relactation. Again, i dragged my then husband and 2-months old Pippa to Arugaan Creche in Philippine Information Agency in Quezon City (from Angeles, Pampanga). Pippa was able to cross nurse with all the moms and wetnurses as for me Baby Brandon latched on me and really helped a lot in protruding my nipple. I had Lactation Massage with Nanay Rich and VOILA! breastmilk flowed out while being massaged. We went home with the right support, our expectations were carefully set- drop the bottle and cup feed and that relactation is possible.

With these on hand i strictly followed an informed decision on breastfeeding and what we as a family have to undergo (relactation). Correcting the damage done with consulting a certified Lactation Consultant wasn’t easy but it took all of me and my family.

As they say it takes a village to become successful in every endeavor and in every village there’s always a villain. Information about breastfeeding is everywhere, some are true and evidenced based and some are greed and marketing driven. I have met a pediatrician who happily called me to be a “pumper mom” when she couldn’t figure out how to make my baby latch on me. God knows how dis-empowering, undermining and disrespectful this is.

All of my breastfeeding struggles are all worth going through, had i known and stick to the physiologic of simply breastfeeding, nothing through the breasts.

Medela, the Villain in my breastfeeding journey.

Please find time to read this link “Yes, Medela Violates the Code”:,%20Medela%20violates%20the%20Code.pdf

Random thoughts and mix emotions: “MILK:Born Into This World”

Random thoughts and mixed emotions while watching the “MILK:Born Into This World”
How i wish i’am seated with a pediatrician, OB, nurse and all the hospital staff  and medical students when the scene about a mom and daughter who prepared well and everything they could think of in preparation for the D-Day and to have a good start in breastfeeding. The teenage mom reminded me of time when i was a teenage mom. She prepared her birth plan and specifically wrote that she wish to breastfeed as soon as possible when the baby is out. She carefully enumerated how she wish to give birth most of her wishes didn’t come true.

A Film by Noemi Weis
A Film by Noemi Weis

The documentary is an eye-opener. It opened a lot of cans with different worms inside. Some of which can not be addressed yet and some have been killing most of it’s consumers. It showed how nutrition from the very beginning of life through breastfeeding, nothing by mouth can save lives. And yet formula milk are still in place or even at it’s glory
nowadays. It is so ironic that at this age of computer and “google research” that studies and researches about breastfeeding are put under the table by the formula milk companies. Mainstream nutrition has been colonized by marketing of breast milk substitutes.

This film gives hope. It gives hope to breastfeeding advocates to continue what has already began. The film is a “fundal push” to all government instutions and worldwide organizations to act together and put up a fist on what should be the norm, breastfeeding.

This movie posts a question to all of us ” How much of the breastfeeding failure/s have we contributed? How much of the success of every mom and child have actually contributed? How much of the breastfeeding protocols have we violated? How much of the milk code violation are we exercising each day? How near are we in normalizing breastfeeding within us?

Every birth counts to every latch of a newborn to breastfeed. One breast at a time, one mother at a time, two breasts for breastfeeding.

Can you imagine a world without milk born into it?

Breastfeeding means- Sharing, Inspiring and being Blessed

It’s not everyday that I get a chance to witness how mothers help each other at challenging times. I was so inspired to know that the Mother Nurture Coffee Mix I delivered to Mommy Pam was to given to another breastfeeding mom, Gem who shared a picture of her output from pumping after taking MN.

To briefly share with you, Mommy Gem is generously pumping breast milk to share with Rylee (Sis Pam’s son) who has a medical condition and undergoing IVIG shots. Mommy Pam is a working mom and is facing hardships to breastfeed Rylee. Thanks to all the support of all the breastfeeding moms she came across with that she (Mommy Pam) didn’t give up breastfeeding.

Share your blessings and you will be blessed more a hundred folds.

Mommy Gem, despite tandem nursing her sons willingly and unconditionally builds stash of breast milk for Rylee. With Rylee’s condition exclusive breastfeeding is needed to alleviate allergens that can aggravate allergic reaction from formula milk.

Pumping or hand expression takes about 15mins and has to be done religiously to increase and build up your stash. The more frequent you express the more you command your brains to produce more milk and with two boys nursing from Mommy Gem she is continually blessed with more milk, more than enough for her sons that she’s able to share with Rylee.

I’am inspired for the selflessness a mother can be to another baby from a different womb. The thought of sharing every drop of precious liquid to help in the welfare of another mom’s baby is something to share with. Breastfeeding is truly about sharing what HE blessed us with as a mother. Hope you too can draw inspiration after reading this.
Thank you!

Translation  Mommy Gem: Mommy Pam Choco Mix is effective, In 5mins here is what I pumped while chatting.
Mommy Gem: Mommy Pam Choco Mix is effective, In 5mins here is what I pumped while chatting.

My breastfeeding journey, not an ordinary story

Since my breastfeeding story is long overdue i have to warn you that this is going to be a long narration. And to keep you with me til the end of my story im going to break it down to three major stages- Pregnancy, Breastfeeding and Relactation. Come with me as i unveil my story and maybe you’ll find similarities in your breastfeeding story too.


December 5, 2013 – i woke up and went to Watson’s to buy pregnancy kits, yup! i bought two kits just in case the 1st test will be unclear. This is my second pregnancy (first was 13 years ago, to Jared). Voila! i saw two red lines on the first and second test. Answered prayer. From the moment i knew i was pregnant i knew i’m carrying a baby girl. For I’ve been praying for her. I went to see my OB, to make sure the baby is OK for i rode my mountain bike the past weekend. Baby is 5 weeks gestational age according to the ultrasound. I went through the all the necessary tests and found out that my blood sugar is high and I’m positive for Gestational Diabetes Melitus (GDM).

I was advised to go on a strict diet, monitor my calorie intake and prick my fingers and test my sugar level. I had to prick and draw blood on my fingers before and after meal as part of blood sugar monitoring. I was subjected to inject insulin twice a day to prevent any complications all throughout my pregnancy, while giving birth and post partum. My license to eat whatever i want to eat because of pregnant was thrown out straight to the window. I was supposed to have 5-6 small meals to regulate my blood sugar. I got tired pricking my fingers and injecting my tummy with insulin so i consulted a different Endocrinologist and i was advised to stop insulin, test my sugar level twice a day but follow a strict diet.

Since my GDM has been addressed i focused on my birth plan. Joined several mommy support groups and breastfeeding groups to equip myself. Yes, i mentioned that this is my 2nd pregnancy and i should know the drill. But, i believe that every mom and pregnancy is unique. I have attended several breastfeeding classes and talks. One was offered free by The Medical City. They demonstrated all breastfeeding positions, benefits and all the goodness breastfeeding brings to every mom, every child and every family.

As my due date comes near, i started listing my birth plan far different from my first. This time i learned about “Unang Yakap” as part of Essential Intrapartum Newborn Care (EINC) as a right of the delivering mother and the child being born. Sadly, there are few hospitals abiding by this practice due to political and profit reasons. So i made it sure that i am only giving birth to a hospital that adhere to EINC and breastfeeding practicing hospital. Thankful that Chinese General Hospital adheres to these in compliance with Department of Health (DOH) and World Heart Organization (WHO).

My birth plan

First, I elected to undergo a no anesthesia and vaginal or normal delivery. I considered water birth but to my GDM situation it’s very risky. Why suffer all the pains of giving birth? My take is not every woman is given a chance to be pregnant and deliver a child and i want to experience the whole 360 degrees of giving birth as im about to start all natural and attachment parenting. Believe me, the pains were excruciating but all gone when i saw Pippa came out of me.

Second, i need to practice my right of non-separation from my newborn, we start the “First Embrace” “Unang Yakap”

Third, to breastfeed my newborn, my cherub, my Pippa.

Here’s a link to know more about EINC

July 26th  2013 at 6:28AM i gave birth to my cherub “Pippa”, thankful for my safe delivery and my birth plan was followed. We started “skin to skin” as soon as she was born all the way to our private hospital room. Pippa didnt need to be put in the nursery room but straight to me.

As i gather all my thoughts to breastfeed my Pippa she had a hard time latching on me due to short/inverted nipples. And from here i will end my pregnancy story and introduced my breastfeeding story which i will share in a different post.

For a more detailed account and information on Unang Yakap please visit:

So long, good bye and see you around… but not soon

And so i met you in October 2010, we got along and shared many rides together. Oh so wonderful times together, memories down the lane. We started our own version of “you and me against the world” courtesy of those who cared for you- your family. That taught me a lesson that second to God your family will always be there for you to love and care for you.

We struggled, we fought and we were blessed. A blessing that i would always be thankful for. Answered prayer. A blessing that will always remind me i can never erase or undo you in this lifetime or even in a different time. She will always remind me of you along the many memories i have to keep at the very corner of me so that i wont be reminded of it.

Happiness, bliss, challenges made us up and has broken us many times but these has to stop. Make room for new ones and flourish the ones we keep. Life is hard but im a believer that things can only get better. The same way i hope for myself’s happiness and peace i wish you the same.

It’s a whirlwind ride but just like a roller coaster after the ride you unbuckle and move on to the next ride.

Magsulat, lumaya at humayo ka

Hayaan ninyo akong muling maging Malaya sa pagsulat. Tatangkain kong maisulat ang kasalukuyang naglalaro sa aking isip. Aking isasatitik ang mga nai-imahe ng aking mga mata at siguro’y pinipintig ng aking puso at dinadaing ng katawan kong pagod.

Akalain mo Hindi ako gaanong nahirapang simulan ang siping Ito.

Dati ko nang napagtanto na anumang Bagay kapag ito’y naisulat na ay Hindi na maaring mabura.

Lapis, Ballpen, chalk, “pentel pen”, crayola at Kung anu-ano pang panulat ang gamitin anumang naisulat ay Hindi na mabubura. Hindi mabubura sa murang isipan ng munting bata ang lumagpas sa kinukulayang imahe gamit ang krayola. bagkus ay maingat nyang kukulayan ang sumusunod na imahe upang wala ng kulay ang lumagpas.

Kung lapis Naman ang iyong ginamit, burahin mo man ang iyong naisulat gamit ang mamahaling pambura bakas pa din ang Kung anuman ang naisulat dahil sa diin ng pagtitik. Mabura mo man sa kasalukuyang pahina ang iyong naisulat bakas pa din sa susunod na pahina ang iyong sinulat. Mas Madiin mas malalim ang dahilan, pwedeng magaan kase pagod na ang sumusulat.

Naisulat, pwedeng Hindi sinasadya ang anumang sinulat. Sinulat, dahil gusto, dahil kailangang isulat para mabasa.

Sumusulat, kase paulit- ulit kailangang isatitik upang maiparating ang nais sabihin sa nagbibingihang mambabasa.

Meron nga diyan, sulat ng sulat Kahit walang Kwenta. Wala nga ba talagang Kwenta? Eh, bakit naibahagi? nakopya pa nga at inangkin, pinalitan pa ng pangalan.

Sumusulat, dahil mayroong nais iparating, dahil may gustong ibahagi, sapagkat kailangan ng gabay, upang pagdating ng Panahon ay mayroon kang bubuklatin at babalikan.

Ikaw, bakit ka nagsusulat? Ikaw ba’y sumulat na? Sumusulat ka pa rin ba?

Napakinggan ka na ba? Malaya ka ba? Magsulat ka, lumaya ka, humayo ka.

To love is a DECISION

I guarantee there will be tough times. I guarantee there will be one day when one or both of us would want to get out. But I also guarantee that if I do not ask you to be mine, I’ll regret it for the rest of my life because I know in my heart, you’re the only one.” Everybody was sighing as we watched Julia Roberts say these lines to Richard Gere in an unromantic setting the balcony of a building in bustling New York City in the movie Runaway Bride. A few scenes before that, it was Richard who said the same lines to Julia, likewise in an unromantic scenario, as they were talking about how people propose marriage.

True enough, when we were teenagers it was a question which we loved to answer in slum books. It remains a topic that creates giggles and shrieks whenever friends talk about it. But does one really know what love is? We often mistake it for a crush, an infatuation or Sometimes, even for the sheer joy in companionship.

Sometimes, we think it’s a feeling that we have when our hearts continue throbbing hard when we see that special person. Or when our knees start to shake and begin to weaken. But can anyone really define love? I don’t think so, not even the ones who think they have felt it, or those who are feeling it, or those who hope they will feel it. Not even my philosophy teacher. Because love is not something that you define… it’s a decision.

When you feel that you love one person, how can you tell that he or she won’t feel the same way for the next person who comes along? Love is not a feeling, it’s a decision. Because, when it’s a feeling, it is something that floats in the air, something you cannot touch or dare to comprehend.

Love, when it’s a decision, makes it solid, makes it a commitment, makes it more lasting and more real. You can feel that you can be in love 20 million times in a day, but when you decide to be in love, you can only decide to be in love with one person once in your lifetime. You commit and you hold on to that decision. And when you turn your back on that decision, it means you were never in love in the first place.

Love should never fade. Because when it does, it means it’s just an emotion. Love will never fade because a decision, once done, is something you stand up for and fight for — no matter what.

What does “I love you” mean? Some people find it easy to say the words but what really matter is being ready to stand up for it when you say those words. Are you ready to face all the consequences after saying those magical words?

If you can say “I love you” long after all the tough times, all the good times and after all the words that come hurting you, then the meaning of those words becomes real.

Of course, I still believe in those words but I myself am afraid to say them. I know there will come a time when I won’t be afraid of those words coming out of my mouth. When I will be strong enough to fight for love — again. And I can say the words “no matter what”.

Saying “I love you” is a major decision in one’s life. Those words should be sacred, should be kept in your heart until you are ready to commit, to fight for that feeling and to stand by those words.

Is love a product of destiny? No, I believe there’s no such thing as destiny. Thus, if love is a product of destiny, then you choose to love, you decide to love. Your destiny is the path that you choose to take.

I guarantee that there will be tough times. Going back to the movie line that made everyone sigh: Yes, it is a decision to commit, it is a decision to love. And when you decide to love, you should realize that there will be tough times and there will come a time when you would want to get out. And when you realize that love comes with all things good or bad, then you know
what love really is.

But there is love…

Everyone waits for love to come into his life. You do not even have to know the meaning of love. Because even without someone to love, there is a love truly waiting for you. A love greater than anything that one wants to feel, greater than what one hopes to happen.

Lack of love should not create feeling of emptiness inside you because there is always this Someone who will fill it up for you. Just look up.

Circles, cycles

One always has to know when a stage comes to an end. If we insist on staying longer than the necessary time, we lose the happiness and the meaning of the other stages we have to go through.
Closing cycles, shutting doors, ending chapters – whatever name we give it, what matters is to leave in the past the moments of life that have finished.
Did you lose your job? Has a loving relationship come to an end? Did you leave your parents’ house? Gone to live abroad? Has a long-lasting friendship ended all of a sudden?
You can spend a long time wondering why this has happened.
You can tell yourself you won’t take another step until you find out why certain things that were so important and so solid in your life have turned into dust, just like that.
But such an attitude will be awfully stressing for everyone involved: your parents, your husband or wife, your friends, your children, your sister.
Everyone is finishing chapters, turning over new leaves, getting on with life, and they will all feel bad seeing you at a standstill.
Things pass, and the best we can do is to let them really go away.
That is why it is so important (however painful it may be!) to destroy souvenirs, move, give lots of things away to orphanages, sell or donate the books you have at home.
Everything in this visible world is a manifestation of the invisible world, of what is going on in our hearts – and getting rid of certain memories also means making some room for other memories to take their place.
Let things go. Release them. Detach yourself from them.
Nobody plays this life with marked cards, so sometimes we win and sometimes we lose.
Do not expect anything in return, do not expect your efforts to be appreciated, your genius to be discovered, your love to be understood.
Stop turning on your emotional television to watch the same program over and over again, the one that shows how much you suffered from a certain loss: that is only poisoning you, nothing else.
Nothing is more dangerous than not accepting love relationships that are broken off, work that is promised but there is no starting date, decisions that are always put off waiting for the “ideal moment.”
Before a new chapter is begun, the old one has to be finished: tell yourself that what has passed will never come back.
Remember that there was a time when you could live without that thing or that person – nothing is irreplaceable, a habit is not a need.
This may sound so obvious, it may even be difficult, but it is very important.
Closing cycles. Not because of pride, incapacity or arrogance, but simply because that no longer fits your life.
Shut the door, change the record, clean the house, shake off the dust.
Stop being who you were, and change into who you are.

There it is, Paulo Cuelho said it, a lot clearer on my behalf.

Happy Mother’s Day

Who said Mother’s Day celebration is over? I guess the celebration wont stop when you keep on receiving presents to celebrate this one special day for moms like me. So i joined this promo hosted by SaYa Baby Carrier- a revolutionary way of baby wearing. Just to give you an idea of who and what SaYa Baby Carrier is, let me share you what i got from their facebook page- “The Saya baby carrier is a wonderful entry-point to the world of baby carrying. You can use it the second your baby is born and continue to enjoy it as your baby grows. Saya urges a gentle revolution in parenting through the beautiful practise of parent-child attachment guided by one vision: A Saya sling for every sanggol!” 

Here’s a picture of SaYa’s Mother’s Day promo:


As easy as 1, 2, 3 i shared who inspired and opened up a bright idea to me on “baby wearing”, here’s my take (winning piece)

“I saw a lot of aetas begging in one of the intersections along Mc Arthur highway, Angeles City. There was a woman carrying two babies using a blanket. One hand to knock on each jeepney or private cars when it’s red light to get the passenger’s attention for alms and her other hand to rock her smaller baby. When she approached our car, I opened my window to give my sandwich and drinks to her and I was surprised to see that one of her children was breast feeding from her. She inspired me and continuously inspires me until now. Rain or shine she need to provide for her children while wearing them. I thank her for giving me the idea that I can wear and be with my baby wherever, whenever.” – Jen Castro

Just like any other moms who joined the contest i was hoping big time to win a SaYa Baby Carrier, a gift, a tool that would allow me to be with my soon to be born baby girl in August. 

In addition to what i have mentioned- baby wearing would allow me to give my baby Sabina, the warmth, security and bonding as soon as she is born up to the day she can walk on her own. We’lll both continue and nourish the bond we’ve started since she was conceived while i go back to work. Simply, we’ll be together 24/7.

Im proud to share with you all the surprise gift i got from SaYa Baby Carrier!!!!


To know more about SaYa Baby Carrier visit their facebook page at

or you can visit their website to know more about “baby wearing”

I’m Happy To Be IN

Sweet 17, Challenging 31st

What are those numbers? Those are my winning numbers being a mom to a baby boy born when i was seventeen and a baby girl at thirty-one this coming August. &nbsp;I gave birth to my 1st born Jared, in July 1999. He was the first baby boy in our family,my eldest brother has a baby girl. I just finished high school then and ready to face the colorful world of college days but i think i have to pause for a while and equip myself.with lessons that would take me to wherever i want to cast my sail.</p><p>Being a single mom at a young age isn’t that easy but i salute my family for the overwhelming support and understanding of my situation. My dad ensured that im eating the right foods that are good for my baby and I. My mom helped through all the changes i will encounter during and post pregnancy. When my baby was born after 18-hours of labor and two pushes my brothers and sisters swapped buying diapers and formula milk for their nephew. And then i have to continue my college studies. Four wonderful years rearing up my son while i continue to be the best mom to him. When i graduated in college, it felt i have redeemed myself from all the people who have ridiculed and me for having a son at an early age. Who knows when is the best time for something to happen?&nbsp;</p><p>Little did i know that being a single parent entitles me to a lot of praises, pat on the back and extra 7 days vacation leave as part of Solo Parent Leave. All these kept me going rearing my son alone. It was my choice to be a single mom, a choice i&nbsp;don’t&nbsp;regret and happy live on. It took a lot of my being a person when i decided to bring up my child alone, at the most trying times that i need someone to be with in everything that is come. But things happen for a reason and i succumbed to being a single mom.</p><p>As i grew maturely as an individual, i have a son who grows with me at the same time picture perfect!

Pure bliss, ups and downs and all this planet and it’s residents had offered i thank my son for being there.</p><p>And now, as i face my MOMMY re-certification with my second child a baby girl in a more challenging situation i can only say “ooooopsss i did it again”. Seriously speaking, my second pregnancy isn’t that easy, i have to deal with a lot of new things that weren’t there during Jared’s time like “Gestational Diabetes”, hormonal changes every day that a lot of people find it hard to understand, but as they say every pregnancy is unique and this makes an ordinary woman a “mother”.&nbsp;</p><p>With a lot of things happening and being said, i think my being a second time is a reminder, that i have to carefully think of the things about to come my way. That i should be prepared thinking that there’s another life within my life that i have nurture. That she will be surrounded with good and not so good things no matter how i protect her. People come and they can easily go whenever they want to. But a person who grows out of love stays forever.</p><p>It was one of those happiest days of my life when i found out that im pregnant. In my heart i know it’s girl this time. Everyday i picture her sweet smile to everyone around her. As i write this letter, it’s overwhelming to feel her every kick, rib jab, punches and hiccups. Take your sweet time my dear for you have a lot of things to accomplish once you’re out in this world of surprises and everything in between.</p><p>I may be addressed with different titles but one thing’s for sure at the end of a long day when people turn their back on me, a son and a daughter will humbly shout “mom”. And that’s all that matters. I want to end this letter reminding myself that it aint easy being a mother and there’s no turning back when you become one, because not every woman can be a mother.</p><p>To all the moms out there, we all face a lot of battles but true victory is seen from our children’s eyes.</p><p>Happy Mother’s Day!</p>

Sabina, we have to break my PR set by your kuya—- 18-hours of labor, 2 pushes, 54 minutes in the delivery room and your Kuya came out na.
Pinkey, thank you for making me a mom again.