If you get offended by breast feeding photos, then you might want to skip this post.
I have now been breast feeding Timothy for over a year. This is a great accomplishment for me! If you may recall, I've said before that I was unable to breast feed Anthony. He was 3 weeks early and I just couldn't get his latch right. Molly I nursed for about a week and then gave up. I was sore to the point of bleeding and couldn't take the pain any more. Afterwards, I saw myself as a failure and felt a guilt only a Mama could......not because I thought or even think now that there is anything wrong with formula feeding, but because I had really wanted to breast feed. I wanted that experience for myself and my children and I failed to give it to them. I wish I had stuck it out. I wish I had sought out more help and support.I wish, I wish, I wish.
To be honest, breast feeding is hard. It is. You have to have the determination to stick it out or it is so, so easy to just call it quits when things get tough. This is especially true for the beginning when you and Baby are trying to get into a routine and get over the hurdle of soreness and sleep deprivation. It's vital to have a support system.....people wanting to help you and see you succeed. Someone to be your cheerleader and tell you how awesome you are and remind you of how badly your heart wants this when you are feeling low and like quitting. Those people will help tremendously.
I remember telling myself that if we were to ever have a third child, I was hell bent on breast feeding and would do everything in my power to do so and not give up. Breast feeding was just something that became very, very important to me....probably fueled by my guilt over not being able to with Anthony and giving up on Molly.
When Timothy came along, I stuck to my word. I was still sitting in the birthing tub when I nursed him for the first time. The following days were tough. Very tough. However, I never once gave myself the option to quit. Soon days were turning into weeks and weeks into months. Before I knew it, I felt like a pro. That's not to say I never had any issues from time to time. I got a blocked milk duct once and that was extremely painful. Timothy is a natural snacker, eating very frequently during the day. His snacking, along with him flat out refusing to take expressed milk from a bottle, leaves him pretty much glued to my side and me never getting more than 3 hours without him (except for one time when I got my tattoo).....and Mama's need a break.
Now, a year later, I'm torn between wanting to start to wean him to just a few (like morning, noon, and bed time) feedings during the day so I can start to gain some me time and freedom this coming summer, or letting him continue on as he has been and wean him self when he's ready. I'm not entirely sure what I'll wind up doing, but no matter what the decision, I'm pretty dang proud of myself for making my goal of a year. I'm so thankful to have had this experience with Timothy. My heart feels whole.
Love you Sugar Plum.