Alternative title would be “Breastfeeding Sucks” But that sounds a lot less helpful.
But here is the truth, Breastfeeding is HARD, It’s really, really, REALLY HARD. I have found from talking to other moms, that it comes a lot easier to some than it does to others. I was one of those moms that had a really SUCKY experience (No pun intended!).
Pain is not the only reason nursing is difficult. It’s also hard because that child needs YOU and ONLY YOU 24/7. you lose your independence and having something depend on you that much is a heavy weight to carry. There is also an emotional aspect of feeling like a failure if you don’t get it right. But for me, the worst part was definitely the pain. Scarlett has a small mouth you guys, like way smaller than most babies and not only that but she also has a lip tie that causes her mouth to not open very wide. The first 4 months of nursing HURT. 4 MONTHS! It got better for 2 months and when she was 6 months old she started getting teeth and then it hurt again for 6 MORE MONTHS! Seriously, it was uncomfortable for all but a total of 4 months out of 14 months. I am SO PROUD to say I nursed her for 14 months. I am proud because I know breast milk was best for Scarlett, I know how hard it was for us and I know that it was worth it.
I was never the mom who loved it, though I do value the extra snuggles and times to hold her close that I wouldn’t have had if it weren’t for breastfeeding.
I write this because before I had Scarlett no one told me that breastfeeding is hard. No one told me it would be the worst part of becoming a new mommy. I know not everyone shares this same experience, but if you do, You’re not alone!! Me too!
I wanted to share a few tips and things that were essential to my nursing experience.
this was the first time I nursed in the car ha!
1. Pump to help build milk supply
I visited an amazing lactation consultant and she helped me build my supply by having me pump after every OTHER feeding with Scarlett (skipping all night feedings) which helped me build my milk supply for Scarlett’s appetite and helped me build a stash for when I needed her to take a bottle.
2.Babies need Probiotics
Their little tummies are sensitive and they sometimes need help! I am just learning about this product called Evivo and it has been so interesting and informative. Did you know that recent studies suggest that the vast majority of today’s moms are no longer passing the beneficial B. infantis bacteria to their babies at birth? Most mommies don’t even have it themselves because of modern medicine and procedures during childbirth, studies also suggest that babies not receiving this good gut bacteria in infancy could be at higher risk for eczema, allergies, obesity, and diabetes. Evivo is an easy way to get that good bacteria back into baby’s body! You just mix it into a little of your breast milk and give it to your child in a little syringe (everything you need is included!) This also helps them absorb everything they need in your breastmilk.
I know as a good mommy you are probably looking into everything possible for your little one so please go read the Evivo Website and learn all about their mission! I didn’t know about this product while Scarlett was still nursing but now that I do I am hoping to use it with our next baby! (no, I’m not pregnant!)
3. Have your partner take 1 feeding per day
(using your pumped milk)
In the beginning when Scarlett was still waking up at night Trevor would take the 2am feeding so that I could sleep more. After she started sleeping through the night he would do a 6pm feeding so I could make dinner (or nap). This helped him bond with her too!
4. Get enough sleep
Sleep when you can and make sure to prioritize you getting rest. You milk supply depends on it and so does your baby!
5. Nipple cream
Seriously life saving! Nuff said
I hope you are able to survive breastfeeding with minimal pain and with grace. Let me know if there is anything you would add to the list!