by Rosalinda Vargas, MOMS Orange County program participant

My son was born in February this year (at 36 weeks of gestation), measuring 19 inches and weighing 5lbs 14oz. He was born healthy, and discharged two days after his birth. He then developed jaundice. 

Infant jaundice occurs when baby’s blood contains an excess of bilirubin, a yellow pigment of red blood cells. It is common, particularly in preterm babies, born before 38 weeks. In order for the jaundice to disappear I had to do two things, expose him to sunlight and feed him on demand.

The feeding was the challenge, as it was extremely hard to keep him awake during feeding or to wake him up to feed him. I started visiting Martha, MOMS OC’s Breastfeeding Coordinator and Health Educator, for her support and her expertise in the lactation field. She walked me through nursing positions, and techniques to keep him awake during feedings. Martha and I worked together for weeks, as his weight gain was slow and steady, while his pediatrician was also monitoring his weight closely.

After weeks of stress, and countless support, baby began to flourish. I have no doubt that my lactation success is due to the support that I received from Martha. She was there when I needed her most; listened to my concerns, answered all of my questions and guided me through it all. She always followed up with me via phone or text message. Her mission was also the same as mine, to give Francisco Xavier the best, my liquid gold (colostrum, vitamins, protein, fat, antibodies, and that precious bond).

I continue to receive love and support from Marlene, my Maternal Child Health Coordinator, who visited me during my pregnancy and now guides me to be the best version of myself for my precious bundle of joy and to assure his growth and development is thriving.

Thank you MOMs OC for your commitment to all OC moms!!!