So even though this feels extremely personal I wanted to share it with you. I have a very good friend who is currently battling over this decision. She said that my story helped so I am hoping that continues!
The picture above is the moment I chose to breastfeed. Sorry about the quality, I didn’t take it.
That’s right, I did not make the official decision until my daughter was in my arms. Let me tell you, it was not an easy decision.
I was against breastfeeding when I was pregnant.
Not because I was uninformed of the health benefits for both my daughter and myself. Not because I thought it would be hard, stressful or messy. Rather because I could not get past the thought of a little human being feeding off of me. It grossed me out, it was such a weird and foreign concept to me. I could not imagine my boobs being someone else’s territory.
None of my close friends had children at this point. The only exposure I had were my sisters-in-law. I was not going to ask them 101 questions, I felt strange about it. Everyone had an opinion on the subject. My family, in-laws, friends, doctors, husband, you name it they had an opinion on my boobs. It blew my mind!
I seemed to be the only person who was torn. So, I did tons and TONS of research on the subject. I watched videos from parents.com, read articles on the bump and tons of books. Whatever I could find I absorbed.
I started to feel guilty about not even wanting to try, mommy guilt before my daughter was even here. Not a good start.
I told my husband that I wanted to at least try but I was so scared.
About 2 weeks before our buggy came into the world, my husband and I went to a breastfeeding class. I gained tons of information and was forced to confront my fears about breastfeeding. Thankfully the person teaching the class was also the lactation consultant at the hospital where I was delivering. She promised me she would be there for me after Buggy was born and she was. She was amazing. After my Buggy was born she came into our room and helped me. She helped me calm down and told me that this is not supposed to be easy but with work, it will come to us. It’s a team sport after all 🙂
By the time we left the hospital (a slightly extend stay) Buggy and I were pretty good at it. Even in public. I definitely used a cape or at least a blanket. My daughter would even use the cape in public as a respite when she became overwhelmed.
Like all babies, she would get tired of socializing and after eating she wanted to relax and chill out, even around family. That was something I could give to her, under the cape! It worked really well for both of us. People LOVE to look at a new baby and moms it is totally okay for you to not want to socialize all the time. Something I am still learning.
I am not saying it was easy, oh no, it was hard. Damn hard! Even with the struggle I still thought she breastfed like a pro; until she was about 7 months old.
Then things changed.
One day she was just in too much of a hurry to feed. She only fed for 10 minutes, she normally would eat for to 20 minutes on each side! Thing was, she was full so I thought it was a fluke.
Turns out I had a super proficient feeder, something not easy on your boobs. Talk about a pro. From the time she was 7 months to 14 months, it only took her 5-10 minutes to feed. They do exist I promise.
For all you moms-to-be thinking that you are gonna have to sit there for 40 minutes until the baby is a year old give it a chance, you might not have to. It is not unusual for a baby to become a super feeder, they have other places to go, things to see and do.
Well, on this trend the sessions just got shorter and shorter. Till finally she was not interested anymore.
It really started to happen when she learned to walk. She could move on her own so she was gone. I read over and over that babies will not wean themselves, until around age 2. “You are subconsciously weaning them if it’s before then.”
That is not the case in this instance. She weaned over such a long time that I barely even felt it. Those who breastfeed know what I mean. That rock that your breast becomes, thankfully, never happened to me.
So ladies it is a possibility. So now I get a chance to say, it is officially over. My daughter has officially weaned herself from breastfeeding.
In hindsight, I am so glad that I did breastfeed. I am not saying you have to, that it is the only way. I know better! I’m also not saying it is easy (nope), clean (can be very messy) or won’t cause stress (cried more than I care to remember), but for me, it was worth it.
The bond I formed with my baby girl is priceless. I actually miss getting some quiet time to sit with just her and stare at her. Now we are constantly going and moving, there is always noise and action.
I will always fondly remember one night at about 2am when she was probably 2- 3 months old. I was up feeding her at night and we were sitting afterward quietly rocking, she smiled at me, just me, and I could feel the love. It was a perfect moment in time.
If you are on the fence, like I was, at least consider it. If you have questions I have tons of references for you, just send me a line 🙂
BTW, I am not ashamed to admit, I am thrilled to have my boobs back 😉
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