Thursday, January 19, 2012

breastfeeding friendly nausea remedy

Have you ever breastfed a baby while throwing up? I have now.

Last week I was sick with the nastiest stomach flu bug that I have seen since I was 17 and made the mistake of delivering food to the garbage incinerator operators. I woke up at 7:30 am and thought, wow, something's wrong with my stomach. It was all downhill from there. This was one of those bugs that makes you vomit until you have not a drop of moisture or food in your body to expel, and still your body tries to vomit. I was on the floor, crying, pressing my face to the cold floor one minute, and shivering under covers the next.

Of course, babies don't understand when mama is sick. All they understand is there need to eat. And this is how I found myself nursing a baby while heaving into a toilet. Eventually, Baby S got curious and decided to stand up at the toilet next to me. And of course, my spit trails looked good enough to eat. Is it any wonder that she got the flu as well?

But I digress. At some point during the day, my mother (who totally saved my life by coming over to take care of all of us as I moaned and cried) called the nurse line to figure out how to save me from having to go to the hospital for dehydration. One of the things that I asked about was an anti-nausea medication. Of course! She started naming things off- and then remembered that I had said I was breastfeeding. Did I want to go out and buy some formula? None of the medications could be used while breastfeeding.

Doh. I quickly said no, and decided to suffer out the nausea by repeating over and over in my head, This too shall pass. But then I remembered the little bottle of ginger essential oil that I kept in my bag for indigestion. Would it work for this horrible, life sucking nausea?

It did. It did. It did. It swept away the worst of the nausea, making it possible for me to hold down a couple of ibuprofens to take away the horrible body pains, allowing me to SLEEP. Blessed, blessed sleep, that took me away from the pain and suffering that I would have traded for labor pains (well... maybe. It's funny how after giving birth the true memory of those pains are wiped away.).

So, for all you breastfeeding mamas that are struck with the stomach flu, or ebola virus, or whatever the evil virus was that decided to invade my body, here is your nausea salvation: Pour into your hand 4-6 drops of ginger essential oil. Rub well onto stomach area (from underneath breasts to belly button). Repeat as often as needed. This is also a great remedy for indigestion, if rubbed on the abdomen.

I hope that you never have to use this. And if you do find yourself nursing a baby while throwing up, at least console yourself with the thought that you'll go down in extreme breastfeeding sport history.

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