I always knew I would be a breastfeeding mama, I just never imagined how much work I would actually have to put in to successfully breastfeed. Here’s my story, shared in Mothering’s Blog about Breastfeeding event…
I gave birth to My Little Man 3 months ago, and I was filled with emotions that morning. I was so very happy to finally meet him, scared of doing something wrong, exhausted from my 3 day birth experience, hungry, and extremely anxious. The anxiety flowed that morning I knew I wanted to feed him within that “golden hour,” that first hour of life I heard was so very important for breastfeeding. I made it a point to tell the nurses that I wanted to feed as soon as possible. Within 45 minutes, I was able to feed that little face that is forever engraved in my mind. Looking at me with one eye open and one eye closed, the feeling of love and nurturing swept me away. It lasted only for a few minutes, but I almost feel like I have a picture of that moment because it replays in my mind all the time.
Once I was in recovery, I had a pretty difficult time. The nurses and lactation consultant would come in to assist me at his feeding time. I hadn’t realized how free I would have to be with my entire body during the learning process. I had a hard time feeding in front of my mother, let alone letting strangers grab and squeeze my breasts to demonstrate hand expression.
The first four weeks of My Little Man’s life, I pretty much lived on the couch. He fed much more often that then minimum 3-4 hours. This Little Man fed every 1 ½ to 2 hours, but it felt like it was every 5 minutes. Breastfeeding did not come naturally for me. It was the opposite, awkward and VERY painful! I felt myself bracing every time he was about to latch on, and the thought of breaking down and switching to formula crossed my mind more than I care to admit.
Then one day out of nowhere, I realized it didn’t hurt so much anymore. In fact, I was actually enjoying feeding my son. I had finally gotten past those initial hurdles, and I felt so good about myself.
Three months later, I am loving breastfeeding more than ever. It has gotten so much easier, and it is so convenient. I love being able to feed on demand in less than a minute. I’m planning to breastfeed for as long as possible. My goal is at least one year, but I’m aiming for a year and a half. I’m so glad that I never gave up and worked so hard to provide my son with the best nutrition possible.
The best advice I can offer is to not give up. It is going to get really hard before it gets really easy!
My Little Man is starting to wiggle awake from his nap…time for another feeding session with my adorable, forever hungry, exclusively breastfed little man.
Thanks for reading!