Mommy Annika and baby Derik Papenfus (5 months) attended BabyGym in 2013. He was a very happy and healthy breastfed baby with no concerns. Mommy Annika was a first time mom and enjoyed motherhood tremendously. She however arrived on that particular day and was desperate- Derik refused to drink (for the 2nd day in a row) and although he was very hungry and restless, he refused to latch onto the breast. When he did latch, he would feed for only a few seconds and would pull away looking unhappy.
She tried everything and considered all possibilities- her diet, her clothes, her fabric softener, her body lotion, his general health, changes in and around their home… she could not understand what the matter was, and was starting to consider a formula feed from a bottle. I was amazed that Derik’s odd feeding behavior coincided with week 3 of the BabyGym programme, because in week 3 we focus on smell, taste and feeding- God’s timing, I suppose! Annika did all week 3’s BabyGym activities in class and one could see Derik becoming more and more frustrated, we were stimulating his suckling reflex after all!
Mommy Annika was hesitant to put him on her breast as she was sure that he would just reject it again, BUT he latched beautifully and started to feed! In fact he kept on feeding for the remainder of the the class, which was 20 minutes. She was so surprised, and I was a little surprised too! Derik fed like a dream and was so satisfied that he fell asleep soon thereafter. When I checked in with them later that week he was still feeding very well and mom was a little more peaceful as she was now equipped with feeding exercises should they face a similar feeding challenge again.