Our final days in South Africa saw us busy busy with clearing out, getting rid of, and packing up for our new, old lives. It’s amazing how much you can gather in a short time – and I guess the principle of a little bit at a time really adding up extends to more than just money (perhaps I should implement that strategy into savings!)Â Over the last three months I have expressed milk only when Ameli has stayed over with my parents for a night, or spent a day with them.
A little at a time adds up and I took 16 bottles of expressed milk to the milk bank. The nurse was really surprised when I walked in. She couldn’t believe how much milk I was donating and made a big fuss about how generous that was and about how amazing it was that I was still breastfeeding. I was rather taken aback, to be honest. And not. It’s understandable when you understand the abysmal breastfeeding rates in South Africa – specifically among white women.
Funnily enough, I had grabbed a supermarket carrier bag to pop the frozen milk into, and as I was leaving spotted the logo on it: Gorgeous Gifts.
True, really. Liquid Gold, The WHO’s second choice feeding option, donated breastmilk.Â I’m so pleased to have been able to help other mothers and their babies and am really sorry that the UK milkbanks wont allow mothers with babies over six months to donate breastmilk. I mean, if a third world hospital can pasteurise, add a few drops of vitamin A and whatever else, how easy would it be for a first world hospital?
As the hospital told me at my singing up visit: Breastmilk, regardless of the age of the baby it’s made for, is still a better option than formula.*
As always and once again, the system just isn’t there to help mothers.
*Not a statement meant to impart guilt. A simple statement of fact as said to me
.Thanks again for joining us for our Pic of the Week