Breastfeeding. This word conjures up so many different emotions in people. When some people hear it they think of the most magical, rewarding and fulfilling time with their littles, and others think of it as the most challenging, painful, and exhausting experience they’ve ever encountered. And both are right. It can be one or the other or all of the above. We each have our own individual journey with breastfeeding — long and short, good and bad — some moments are beautiful while other moments . . . aren’t. I’ve experienced many of these and each of them has a story. Here are my breastfeeding adventures that I’m sure you’ve experienced too: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.
Breastfeeding: The Good
We all know that there are incredible benefits for both mom and baby in regards to breastfeeding. We also know that breast milk is basically magical liquid gold that not only provides amazing nutrition and nourishment to our babies, but it also contains fighting properties to ward off illnesses and disease. It’s incredible when you do your research and discover all of the good. These are the reasons why the majority of mothers give it a go.
When breastfeeding is going good, it is so GOOD. There is nothing better than those sweet baby cuddles, the soft suckles, the overwhelming bonding experience that truly is like no other. There were many products that helped me along the way to have these amazing moments and reach my breastfeeding goals.
Breastfeeding: The Bad
But when things go bad, they are BAD. It can push any mom over the edge. I’ve experienced these too.
- Mastitis. Boy, did that hurt! It was the night before we were moving in to our new house when I got mastitis and I literally felt like I was dying. I had to suck it up the next morning and move. Hot showers massaging my breast, placing Soothing Therapy Pillows in my nursing bra, and taking 4,000 mg of Sunflower Lecithin per day helped me kick mastitis to the curb.
- Pumping every night in the middle of the night. I had a love/hate relationship with pumping. The hard part was pumping in the middle of the night every night for MONTHS as my son was sleeping. If I didn’t do that I would produce less and less each day. It helped me keep my production up, but man was I tired. I was thankful for a fast, quality breast pump and my pumping lube to make it much faster and more comfortable for me.
- Hearing everyone’s opinion and advice. Oh. My. Gosh. I consider myself a Lactivist supporting women to breastfeed their babies wherever, whenever, and however they want, but some are total purists about it. Whether you exclusively breastfeed, cover up or don’t, exclusively pump or formula feed, you do YOU. I trust that you have done your research, that you know your circumstances and child’s needs more than I do, and I support YOU. Grateful to know other awesome companies that do the same.
- Engorgement. Those first days when your milk comes in and your breasts look HUGE and feel like rocks. Yeah, that was fun. Those therapy pillows really helped as we got into our breastfeeding groove.
- Sore nipples. Practicing getting that good latch while your baby is working on their suckle. Your nipples get sore and chapped. A great organic nipple balm is Boobease from Bamboobies. That really helped soothe them and and made me feel a lot better.
- Low milk production. I experienced this A LOT throughout my breastfeeding journey. It was a battle that I faced every day, but I did all the things that I could to keep it up. Lactation smoothies, lactation cookies, supplements, pumping, on demand breastfeeding, etc. All you can do is your best and I’m proud of what I was able to achieve even though there were bumps along the way.
- Weaning. When your child self-weans because he only wants to nurse when your breasts are extremely full of milk . . . That happened. I was heartbroken. Then I became an exclusively pumping mom.
Breastfeeding: The Ugly
- Milk stains. It ain’t the cutest when you have milk stains on your shirts and nursing bras. I used the washable nursing pads from Bamboobies and LOVED them. I seriously can’t recommend them enough to nursing moms. They’re a must for your bust!
- TEETH. When your baby has those first adorable bottom teeth poking through, I immediately thought, “Oh no! My nipples!” Cracked nipples are painful and no fun. Luckily, this organic nipple balm really helped soothe, protect and nourish my nipples so I never had cracked nipples even when those chompers appeared.
- Spilled milk. If you have ever spilled pumped breast milk like I have–it was around 2am and many tears were shed–you are beyond devastated. It’s definitely one of the ugly moments during a mom’s breastfeeding journey that I hope you never experience.
- Nursing in public for the first time. The first time you have your squirmy newborn rooting at your breast in public ready to eat . . . that can be an awkward moment as you fumble around trying to navigate the situation with grace. I definitely recommend wearing a nursing tank to hide your tummy (if that’s a concern) while you nurse and have a nursing shawl to cover what you want covered during your nursing session. They made me feel much more confident and comfortable.
- When your baby refuses to nurse. This is one of the ugliest moments of all. When your breasts are ready to feed your baby but your little one refuses. This is when you realize you cannot control every situation. Your baby is a person too that has a personality with wants and preferences. Doing your best and letting go can be the hardest part of being a mom.
Breastfeeding: The Beautiful
Is breastfeeding tough? Yes, sometimes it is. It was at times for me. But was it an experience that I regret? ABSOLUTELY NOT. I’m proud of our breastfeeding journey. I know that I tried. We both did and I feel grateful for it all. There’s beauty even in the imperfections and I’m here to celebrate and appreciate it all.
Bamboobies is company that I have loved throughout my breastfeeding journey. You can see that I used pretty much used all of their products and I’ve had a wonderful experience with their products and their amazing customer service. And right now if you make a purchase on their site today through August 23, 2018 you will receive a FREE pair of their light pink, ultra-thin heart-shaped Washable Nursing Pads. We all love freebies! (Limit one pair per customer.) Just enter code FREE30 at checkout for your own pair. Thank you, Bamboobies, for all that you do for breastfeeding and pumping moms during every breastfeeding stage.