Friday, February 28, 2014

Easy To Love

Easy To Love

My son is one little boy who is really easy to love. He is always full of smiles, cheerful, jolly, cuddly, affectionate, caring and  he loves helping around the house. He likes to help both mum and dad whether it is helping in the kitchen, helping to do chores, helping to fix a cupboard or shelf or giving dad a massage. He is dad's little contractor and mum's little helper.

When his sister injured her ankle recently, he was there to help her remove her shoes and socks because it hurt her to do so. He is always telling jokes and making funny remarks too. So much so, that when you see him, you can't help but smile. Even when I am grumpy and moody, one remark or hug from him will instantly make me smile or laugh aloud and turn my mood around.

Thinking about him and how easy it is to love him, makes me realize that I've got a lot to learn from this little boy. Am I easy to love? I think not. I am always angry, frowning, rushing, in a hurry, grumpy, you name it. Sometimes I speak in harsh tones and my frown is always around. I don't smile often enough nor do I speak in a gentle manner to my children or spouse.

My new resolution (who says you can't make a new resolution in Feb/March?) is to make myself more easy to love.

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Friday, October 11, 2013

Online MSN Programs

A master's degree in nursing consists of classes and labs that can help a Registered Nurse (RN) expand their professional options. Meant for RNs who hold a bachelor's degree in nursing, a master's in nursing, also called a MSN (Master of Science in Nursing), provides professional training and clinical work in the health care system. 

A MSN program will offer courses in nursing theory and health care administration, which will expand the insights and knowledge of any RN well-beyond their own experiences. In addition, the clinical requirements in MSN programs provide a new level of training with patients and leading nursing teams a RN is not typically used to. Like many master's programs, a MSN program is 2-years and offered with concentrations. For example, many RNs may wish to become a family nurse practitioner (FNP), who help patients and their family's related to the patient's care. For example, many FNPs interact with families about how to avoid injuries or infectious diseases. Many FNPS may work in geographically isolated areas or regions where health disparities are extreme. A MSN education with a FNP degree can help many nurses aid families with important preventative health measures. 

As more RNs invest in MSN programs, many schools, like Ohio University, are providing online options. With online MSN programs, students can learn the materials the classes through online course modules and virtual environments. This will allow many RNs the balance of taking classes while continuing to work at hospitals or medical centers. Clinical requirements will need to be conducted on-campus or in nearby hospitals monitored by faculty; however, students will be able to balance those laboratory requirements within their schedule well in advance of their work schedules. 

With online options and a chance to expand one's professional knowledge and acumen will help many RNs become the nursing leaders of the 21st century. Whether it can be helping a nursing team implement procedures found in the Affordable Care Act or helping to guide families toward healthy living goals, a MSN degree with a FNP concentration will help nurses take on new responsibilities in the health care industry.

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Monday, September 23, 2013

Breastfeeding Tips For New Mothers


Whenever you see a photo of a breastfeeding mother, it is often a picture of tranquility and bliss. The mother would be looking down lovingly at baby, sometimes holding a tiny hand in hers. The baby would be looking right back up at mummy. The picture is one of pure love. It looks so natural and beautiful.

Well, it will be that way after a while but not at first. In order to make that blissful breastfeeding picture a reality for you MUST prepare yourself. Here are some breastfeeding survival tips for new mothers.

  1. Get practical help - This is very, very important. I can't stress this enough. Support is essential! Arrange for another mother, a friend or relative with breastfeeding experience or a lactation consultant to be by your side immediately after the birth and delivery. You will need someone to show you how. Breastfeeding requires practice.
  2. Arm yourself with knowledge - Unlike bottle or formula feeding, it is hard to figure out whether you are doing the right thing and whether your baby is getting enough milk at first. Find out how many stools a breastfed baby should be having a day. This is a good indicator. Find out the growth chart of breastfed babies. Do not compare it with the growth chart of a formula fed baby. They are different. These are just a few examples of the things you should know beforehand.
  3. Don't Give Up! - You may face difficulties at first. Don't give up. Keep on trying. Keep practicing and you will eventually get it right. If you can get it right after a few hours or days, well, then lucky you. If not, persevere. Don't give up!
  4. Be Clear Of What YOU Want - Do not be swayed by the opinion of others. There will be those who tell you that your milk is not enough and other negative things. Do not be influenced by what others say or stress yourself up over it. On the other hand, there will also be those who are strongly pro-breastfeeding, those who make you feel like a total failure if you don't try hard enough. They may push you very hard without realizing that your stress levels and circumstances are preventing you from enjoying your baby. Yes, you know that breast is best but be very clear about how long you want to breastfeed your baby. You may change your mind later about the length of time but that is okay too. For example, you may find that breastfeeding is so good for you and baby that you decided to extend your original intention to breastfeed for 6 months to 3 years. Don't let anyone tell you that it is wrong to breastfeed a toddler. It is YOUR decision. Be at peace with YOUR decision, whatever it may be. If stopping at 3 months is what you can manage because of your circumstances, then do not feel guilty about it or feel bad because you did not breastfeed for a certain recommended period of time.
  5. Don't Be So Hard On Yourself - Not everyone will have it easy breastfeeding so don't be too hard on yourself if you are having a hard time. Try again the next day if you don't succeed today. 
  6. Enjoy Your Baby - Don't forget to enjoy your baby. You may be getting very little sleep now and feeling some stress but don't forget to enjoy your baby and this precious time you have together.
I hope that all mothers who want to breastfeed will be able to succeed. Happy Mother's Day to all mothers old and new.

This article was written by Mimi Koay. Mimi is the author of "I Didn't Know It Was So Hard to Breastfeed", a booklet about her breastfeeding problems. She hopes that by sharing her story mothers will be able to learn from the mistakes she made. She also wrote "Mother, Wife, Myself" a collection of heart warming poems about finding yourself after becoming a mother and a wife.

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Thursday, September 19, 2013

Breastfeeding Problems Latching

I am a mother to two breastfed kids. I breastfed my first for 1 1/2 years and the second for 3 years. However, breastfeeding was not smooth sailing for me, not at first. My main breastfeeding problem was latching my babies, both of them.

You would think that by the second time, with my experience of breastfeeding for 1 1/2 years, things would be easier and I would no longer have any baby latching problems while breastfeeding but that is not the case.

My second baby took 2 months before learning to latch on. I think breastfeeding moms lack support.

Plenty of support especially Practical Support is Essential during the early part of breastfeeding. I can't stress that enough.

Top 5 Breastfeeding Help Sites

These are the 5 sites that helped me the most during breastfeeding.

1. KellyMom
2. Dr. Jack Newman's Articles
3. Breastfeeding.com
4. La La Leche International
5. Breastfeeding Stories

I will tell you about each of them as you scroll down this page.

1. KellyMom - THE place to go for help

To me, KellyMom.com is THE place to go for breastfeeding help. It is very comprehensive and detailed and has help in almost all the areas or problems you may encounter during breastfeeding.

If you are planning to breastfeed, go to Kellymom and bookmark that page. You will be returning to it again and again to read about various issues you may face during breastfeeding.

If you can, read up as much as you can even BEFORE you start to breastfeed to prepare yourself for what is to come.'

2. Dr Jack Newman's Articles
Read Dr Jack Newman's Articles. They are available for download free on pdf.

I love this man even though I have not met him and never will. I love Dr Jack Newman's Breastfeeding Articles. They are so helpful and he makes them available for free.

During the time when I had so many problems latching baby and I felt like giving up everyday. Every day I struggled with my decision to carry on breastfeeding. It was this statement from Dr Jack Newman's Article that kept me going.

"The single most important factor influencing whether or not the baby latches on is the mother's developing a good milk supply. If the mother's supply is abundant, the baby will latch on by 4 to 8 weeks of life no matter what. "

This is the article with the statement above that helped me persevere when baby just won't latch on no matter what.

When The Baby Refuses To Latch On

3. Breastfeeding.com has a vast question and answer center

If you have any breastfeeding questions, then be sure to check out Breastfeeding.com. They have a huge resource of Breastfeeding Q & A, also called The Breastfeeding Answer Center to answer all the questions you may have on breastfeeding including your latching problems.

Commonly asked breastfeeding questions and naturally included plus you will find other not so common questions too like questions on illness or surgery and questions on fenugreek and other herbs etc.

4. Get Help and Tips from La La Leche International

La La Leche International is probably the most recognized and known breastfeeding help centre internationally. They have local chapters all over the world to support breastfeeding mothers.

What I like most on the La La Leche International website is the Breastfeeding Answers From La La Leche International page.

I also recommend this other breastfeeding resource page on their site. Go here to Download Past Issues of Breastfeeding Today Magazine. Breastfeeding Today is an international magazine with inspiring stories plus helpful information, news and reviews for expectant parents.

5. Breastfeeding Stories

I had a very difficult time breastfeeding, especially with latching baby. I found that reading success story from other breastfeeding mothers really helped me. Here is the page which I often visited to read the breastfeeding stories. It is not a very known page. In fact, it is rather old, with the last update made on 21 September 1999! However, I really hope that they keep the page and don't take it down because it has been really useful to me and I know it will be useful to other breastfeeding mothers who face difficulties in breastfeeding. Reading breastfeeding stories is a form of support.

I also wrote my own breastfeeding story in a booklet. It is called "I Didn't Know Breastfeeding Would Be So Hard." Hopefully, by sharing my story, I will be able to help and support other mothers who have latching problems.

If you have problems don't be afraid to ask for help!

If you have breastfeeding problems, ask for help! Reach out to your immediate support circle. If you don't have a support circle or the people around you are not supportive of your breastfeeding, ask for help online. Join a breastfeeding forum. You can also ask for help by submitting your questions to some of the breastfeeding sites like Breastfeeding.com and La La Leche International which have a form for you to fill up with your personal breastfeeding question if your question isn't already answered in their Breastfeeding Answer pages.

This is the site I used to ask for help when I desperately needed answers. It is called All Experts.com. Here is their breastfeeding help page. On it, you will see the breastfeeding experts with their biodata and the past answers from that expert. All you need to do is choose the expert you would like to Ask Your Breastfeeding Question, then post your breastfeeding question to the expert of your choice by filling up a form. You can also ask your question from different experts so that you can make better decisions with more answers.

That was what I did. I asked this question. Help! My Baby Is Still Not Latching On At Six Weeks!. I was so desperate, I asked this question to 6 different experts. I was very grateful for all their help. You can view my question and the helpful answers here.

Looking Good
It is important to take care of yourself, mentally, physically and make an effort with your appearance as usual. It will boost your morale when you are feeling down and having breastfeeding problems

Perhaps this is a little out of topic but I just want to remind all breastfeeding mothers especially those who have problems breastfeeding that you must continue to make the effort to look good and take care of yourself during this time.

This thought came to me when I saw this beautiful breastfeeding poncho that will keep you looking good while allowing you to breastfeed baby discreetly.

I'm afraid I didn't make the effort to look good. I practically lived in my pajamas. Not looking good contributed to my feeling unhappy about my initial failure in breastfeeding. Not looking good did not help make me feel better about having difficulty getting my baby to latch on. If I could do it over again, I would take better care of myself and make an effort not to look like something the cat dragged in or as if I had just woken up half the time!

Blog Posts

You can also visit my blog Mothering Times to read some breastfeeding blog posts of mine. I am not an expert, just a mother who had a lot of difficulty breastfeeding but I did face and wrote about some issues like cup feeding, mastitis, etc. Funnily, one of the most popular posts on my blog is My Period Returned Early Even Though I Breastfeed :). I wrote it in 2006 and I still get many visitors for that post till today.

If you would like to help support another breastfeeding mother, why not share your story too? I will help you to post your story online by publishing it on my "Breastfeeding Stories" category on my blog. Here are the breastfeeding stories submission rules.

One of the ways to support another mother during breastfeeding is by sharing your story. If you have had difficulty of problems breastfeeding you will naturally want to do that. It makes me happy to be able to share and help another new mom, even if I don't know her or may never ever meet her because I know that all breastfeeding mothers need support. Support is something that we can't get enough of but sadly is sometimes just not enough.

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Friday, August 02, 2013

My Different Names

When they were younger, it was "mummy".

When she wants to appear more mature, she calls me "mom"

When he wants to get his way, he calls me "mama"

Whatever it is, I'm very happy to be their mother.

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