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How Mastitis and Lockdown Birthed a Solution

Writing by Freya Bennett

Stepping into the realm of motherhood for the second time, I encountered an unexpected hurdle – at just 4 days old, my newborn daughter had lost too much weight. Having undergone a breast reduction three years prior, I knew breastfeeding might pose challenges, but I held onto hope when my colostrum enthusiastically arrived. It soon became apparent, however, that I had a very low milk supply.

After a weepy callout to a local mums’ group when my hungry daughter was unable to settle, I found a lifeline in donated breast milk, transforming our little community into a village literally nourishing my daughter and lifting a weight off my shoulders.

Donated breast milk provided a temporary fix and one that is still holding strong, however the world of formula and bottle feeding was uncharted territory for me. After attempting to time our first post-birth hospital appointment with her at home feeds, we ended with a hungry, wailing baby due a late appointment and a stressed little lady who just wanted some milk. My supply wasn’t enough to satisfy her and my mum guilt as she cried hungrily the whole way home was huge. And so my late night quest for a solution to feeding our baby donated breast milk while out and about led me to Meke Baby.

Meke Milk is a portable milk warmer designed for use with infant formula or breastmilk. Being able to warm up milk wherever we go brought me to tears. It seems like such a small thing, but I really was feeling housebound.

Founded by Elysia and her husband Chris, Meke Baby was born out of a pivotal moment in their lives. As new parents to their precious little girl Armani, they encountered a similar situation to me that sparked the creation of Meke Baby. While at the supermarket during Covid-19,  Elysia, facing the challenges of mastitis and came to the realisation that she didn’t have enough breast milk for the day. Unable to heat up the expressed milk they’d brought along due no access to hot water (all cafe’s were closed during lockdown) and with a crying, hungry baby, this moment served as the catalyst for the development of Meke Baby, desperate to provide a solution for parents facing similar struggles.

This situation sparked a search for baby warmers, which left Elysia, astonished by the lack of safe heating methods in the baby market. This prompted her to question whether options such as thermoses, insulated bags, or seeking out the closest pot of hot water were truly the only solutions available.

Meke Baby prioritizes food-grade materials and ensures the protection of vital nutrients and antibodies present in milk during the heating process.

Elysia and Meke Baby’s story is a celebration of resilience and creativity in the face of breastfeeding challenges – challenges that are so common but often not talked about. For mums navigating the intricate landscape of breastfeeding or those seeking an easy way to warm milk and formula on the go, Meke Baby stands as a beacon of innovation and support, embracing the ever-evolving adventure of parenthood with open arms.

Since discovering Meke Baby, I have since enjoyed the freedom of leaving the house. The simplicity of being able to satisfy my hungry baby with warm milk without the hassle of finding a cafe or decanting boiling water from a thermos is incredible. I am constantly being reminded of the genius of mothers, who find solution through the difficulties and I am so grateful to those who’ve created products that have saved this weepy mother and her hungry bub.

Freya Bennett

Freya Bennett is the Co-Founder and Director of Ramona Magazine. She is a writer and editor from Dja Dja Wurrung Country who loves grey days, libraries and dandelion tea. You can follow her on Instagram @freya___bennett

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