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Mama Knows Breast

Her Manhattan apartment was stocked with every piece of equipment a new mom could want.  But when Andi Silverman brought home her new baby, she faced a scary realization.

"I knew more about my gear than I did about my boobs," the mother of two admits. "You spend so much time on the objects...crib, car seat, stroller...But you don't think much about how you are going to feed your baby."

Thus began her breastfeeding odyssey.  She struggled with massive engorgement, horrible pain and overwhelming fatigue.  Six months into it, Silverman was still nursing her son and finally feeling more confident and decided she wanted to write about her experiences.  She hopes "Mama Knows Breast: A Beginner's Guide to Breastfeeding ," will help other moms feeling a bit blindsided by the realities.

"We are given all of this info about breast is best. But there is no support system for moms. You are really left to fend for yourself." explains Silverman, who once worked as an attorney and as a television reporter.

The paperback touches on everything from coping with unexpected leaks, ill-fitting clothes and sleep deprivation to getting your spouse or partner involved to anecdotes from other moms who "lived to tell about it."

There is even a chapter on getting your groove back with candid advice about sex and relaxation. Here are a few of Silverman's tips for "restoring your body and your soul" while mastering the early stages of motherhood and breastfeeding.*

For Your Body:
Shave your legs.  Just think. For the first time in months you can actually reach your legs without bumping into your stomach!

For Your Mind:
Hang out with an old friend. If you can't get someone to watch the baby, bring him along. He'll probably sleep. If not, feed him and he'll doze off.

For Your Relationship:
Romance your spouse.  Remember the time in your life when dating was a series of fun surprises and activities you plotted and planned?  Well, it's time to try all that again. At a minimum, sending a flirtatious e-mail will give you something different to think about while you're caught in the daily poop-feed-poop-feed cycle.

Writing and researching the book also helped Silverman deal with the identity shift that comes with motherhood.  She launched a breastfeeding blog along the way, as well (  Silverman tells The Well Mom, "It helped me hold on to my identity as a reporter.  It gave me something else to think about other than do I have enough baby food or do I need to buy more diapers?" The projects also gave her an outlet when she found out she was pregnant again just ten months after her first son was born.  Looking ahead, she aspires to write a series of "Mama Knows" books.  "It is a true testament to that old saying, 'write what you know,' she says.

*Excerpted from Mama Knows Breast: A Beginner's Guide to Breastfeeding by Andi Silverman copyright 2007 Quirk Books.

© 2007 The Well Mom, Inc.

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