I nursed my first born for 10 months, my second baby for 14 months and my third for 16 months. It will be an experience that I look back on and cherish for the rest of my life.
1. It is hard. Like really hard.
My first daughter and I had the hardest time figuring it out. I remember being in the NICU with one of the nurses in such pain when Hayden was nursing saying “This doesn’t feel right I can’t keep going like this” and the nurse insisted that “it’s uncomfortable at first and I will get through it.” Which is totally true, however when Hayden was done nursing I pulled her off and my nipple was sliced open and bleeding. Not the best way to start my breastfeeding journey!
It took a good two weeks for Hayden and I to even figure out how to get a good latch, talking with lactation consultants and practicing a lot. But we eventually did get the hang of it!
⇒It is crazy how different every baby is too, my second daughter latched much easier and we had it down within about a week. And my son (third baby) came out of the womb nursing like he had been doing it for years, it also helped that I had been doing it for years too, of course!
2. It brings on anxiety.
Between not knowing really how much your baby is getting because you can’t measure from your boob, to learning how to know when they are full, figuring out their rhythm, learning which burping method works best for them, to figuring out how the heck to nurse this baby in public without sharing your nipples with the world. There are a lot of factors that produced anxiety in me, and it was important for me to talk about them with trusted friends and family and know that it was okay to not know all the answers and make mistakes!
3. Its painful.
The pain for me was toe curling for about 4-6 weeks. Chapped, cracked, bleeding you name it! BUT it does get better, it does! Using cream between feeds and airing them out (what a sight) its super helpful. Stick with it, don’t give up, and hold on to the hope that it will one day not be painful at all.
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4. You will want to give up, but don’t.
There were many times when I was just crying – yes me, not the baby – for a bottle, saying I couldn’t do it anymore and wanted to give up. Thankfully I had my mom cheering me on and reminding me that it will get better. (Thanks mom!) This is where your support system comes in, talk to your husband – or whomever your support person will be – before the baby comes. Tell them your desires and goals, you want to nurse for the baby’s first year? Great!
Share this with your person so that when it gets hard they will hold you up and push you when you need to be pushed.
5. Its one of the most amazing things you will experience in this lifetime.
The connection it produces between you and your baby is like no other. No one else on earth will have the connection that you have with your baby. You’ve got this, mama!
For tips on how to get you and your baby into a simple routine head over to my post ⇓