Friday, December 28, 2012

Breastfeeding is not for the faint-hearted

Its funny how some things in life sound so much easier in theory than in reality.

Its very easy to do especially before you become a mother.

I was the worlds best mother before I actually became one. My kid never watched tv. Time out worked like a charm. I never lost my cool. I made elegant dinners from scratch every night--and they ate it all. And I could just plop my baby on my boob to eat and that was that. Because my kid never was going to drink an ounce of formula in their life.

The reality is because I have a newborn, my 3 1/2 year old watches a lot of tv and somedays she wears her pjs all day long. And sometimes I say screw it lets just get you a "ham" (hamburger) from Wendy's. I matoes. And breastfeeding didnt work out for her. We used a formula that was $60 for a 14oz can.

Fast forward to today.

Today as I was chained to Haven I hear a scream coming from the living room. I yelled back to Jayda to come to my room so I could comfort her. She said: "I can't! I'm stuck!" So I come out boobies still floping everywhere to this...

Sometimes you cant help but laugh, but other days you just want to cry.

One night after I had put Jayda to bed and I felt finally at peace I was downstairs feeding Haven and I hear a distant bloody murder scream. Its Jayda. I quickly unlatched leaving a very pissed off Haven to make sure Jayda was not being hacked into a million pieces by some creepo. When I got upstairs she simply said, "But mommy you forgot to give me knuckles!" Kick me in the gonads right now. Seriously?

Haven got her immunizations the day after Christmas and was on an eating strike til last night. Flashbacks of Jayda suddenly going on a feeding strike (thats lasted 3 1/2 years mind you) as a baby came rushing back. Please no, not like her. She hates food, remember you're different?!

Then this morning the beast came back. She hasn't left my boob so today was one of those days that I didnt move from the couch. Some days you just want to lay down and just have your You just want to not be the source of nutrition and eat something yourself.

Before I had Haven I thought man if I could just breastfeed it would be easier.

Oh, how naive I was. It's laughable really.

Now dont get me wrong. I'm so glad I'm breastfeeding. Most days I love it. I love the closeness and I sure as hell love not having to spend a fortune on formula. I also love that my 3 year old has brought the nasties home 4 different times and my baby hasnt had it once.

But somedays I just want to cry. I just want to give up. I just wonder if its worth the hard work. Then I remind myself how much work I've already put into it. How much I wanted this and I know if I were to give it up in a moment of frustration I would regret it forever.

No one told me that breastfeeding is so much more then just "plopping" them on. I hate that word. Its so lazy and breastfeeding is anything but lazy. At least I havent gotten to that point yet.

Its not knowing whether they are getting enough. Having your supply drop after a day of lazy eating and then having her scream because theres no milk the next day when she decides shes starving again and feeling completely helpless.

Its running to the store across town in my pjs on a Sunday morning to get Fenugreek almost in tears because my milk is drying up even after eating buttloads of oatmeal, water and gatorade and power pumping the crap out of the girls.

Then you take the Fenugreek and smell like your pounding down the pancakes by the dozens. Maple syrup scent. Always wanted the maple syrup scent. Hey, at least its not potatoes.

Its having to pump after every feeding to make sure your supply doesn't drop again and sometimes you wonder if its worth feeding the imaginary twin or not.

Then ironiclly the next day its being drenched in milk when your baby roots around, latches and then lets go the moment the let down gets too strong. Then gets pissed because milk isnt pouring down her gullet. Just stay latched on and this wouldnt happen. Am I right or am I right?

Its feeling glued to the couch during growth spurts. You finally think your baby has filled the brink in the milk department and is completely zonked on your boob. You peel them off, lay them in bed only to watch their eyes shoot wide ass open. A few seconds later they start rooting around as if they never ate a drop of food in their life.

But then there are days when you are proud of the fact that your body is smart enough to feed your baby. Its amazing really if you think about it. That your baby needs you and no one else. That when you hear their cry for food you feel honored to be the one to fulfill that need. And that your baby feels comforted being with mommy touching skin to skin.

Its the feeling that your giving your baby the yummiest food available. And its moments where they are completely zonked out and milk is just running out the side of their mouth that they suddenly shoot you the biggest smile. That is when you know its all worth it.

I'm so glad I've stuck it out but man some days when shes screaming, not wanting to latch but seemingly starving--but still wetting diapers and growing great--that you think man why dont I just get that damn bottle out and call it a day. And some days I do. Some days I just pump a bottle and say now off little baby. I think some feedings you need to do that--at least I do.

Thats the reality of breastfeeding in the first couple months. Its nothing flashy (no pun intended) like I imagined. Its nothing easy like I imagined but its worth the hard work. And its worth seeing my baby thrive when last time I didnt.

And people who breastfeed multiples. Well they deserve a damn medal.


  1. I love your honesty and humor Ashley!!! I don't read many blogs about babies these days but I can't seem to stay away from yours and I always love your stories.

    I am so the perfect mom right now, LOL! I'm going to keep your advice in mind when I actually become a mom. :)

    1. Thanks sarah!! Im stoked to hear about your ivf coming up!!!! Its so close!! Yay! And you'll be a great mother in what t minus 9-10 months give or take. ;)

  2. Yep. Breastfeeding those first few months is very difficult. I'm hoping it will go more smoothly for me the second time around. But I am also worried about having a toddler to keep up with. She also remembers nursing so I'm thinking she'll want to nurse again! no way!
    Keep it up mama. Don't give up! You got this.