This week I thought I would share what have been my top ten favourite things about breastfeeding (so far). Our breastfeeding journey has had it’s ups and downs but it’s nice to look back at how far we have come and remember the good bits … and try to block out the bad bits – sore nipples, mastitis and the negativity and the debates (To Boob or not to Boob?).
So here we go! The best bits of out journey so far!
1. The first latch – in an ouch-ouch-ouch-woohoo-it-works-kind-of-ouch way… I did worry that I wouldn’t be able to breastfeed as I have had operations to removed a lump from each breast and I have fair large scars but it seems I wasted a lot of perfectly good worrying on this as my boobs (thankfully) work!!
2. The first painfree latch – I can’t even remember exactly when this was but I do know it was great to know that we could get there is breastfeeding wasn’t always going to feel like someone was cutting my nipple off with a shard of glass. (Thank you Lansinoh Nipple Cream – magical)
3. Breastfeeding in public for the first time – this was a very mixed moment, scary – oh my … I am getting my boobs out… in public… but also I felt proud in myself that I was brave enough to do this as I didn’t want to stay at home and I vowed to myself that I would never hide away and feed Boo in a toilet. My tiny baby Boo decided she would feed very very noisily so all my hopes of being discreet rapidly vanished, and just in case there were any deaf people in the vicinity (my local Drs surgery waiting room) Boo decided that when her name was called she wouldn’t unlatch so I had to walk through the room feeding Boo! Subtlety is really not Boo’s strong point.
4. Getting to my goal of 6 weeks, then six months, and then a year… we are still going and I am hoping to now carry on until Boo weans herself. I really think that worked well for me to have short time goals because it really made me feel like I had achieved something especially when we were going through a difficult patch.
5. What Boo asked for ‘baba’ for the first time. It was so cute the fact that she could ask for what she wanted! Now they are called ‘boobies’ though and I get a overdramatic point with a finger on my chest – just so I know exactly what she is talking about! Boo is serious about boobies. And Boo has also started pointing out anyone else’s boobies too which I fear is going to lead to some very embarrassing moments…
6. How excited Boo gets when she asks for ‘boobies peeesss’ (please) and when I say yes she cheers and bounces up and down – never before have my boobies got such an enthusiastic response!
7. Surviving expressing at work (I went back to work for 2 days a week for three months when Boo was 11 months old) I hated expressing at work, it was awful, I wouldn’t have been able to get through it if I had returned to work full time and for any longer. It totally messed up my milk supply while I was having to do it and because expressing wasn’t as efficient as Boo I had a couple of bouts of mastitis in that time too. But getting through it made me feel really proud.
8. Sleepy milky newborn cuddles – Boo used to fall asleep feeding all the time and that dreamy content sleeping milk face was just so cute. I will never forget how special those cuddles felt. One of the best bits about the sleeplessness that comes with a newborn baby!
9. The last night feed – Boo was 11 months when we decided that she was ready to stop night feeds, she wasn’t ready much earlier but she has been sleeping longer and longer without milk and she was easier to get back to sleep without milk too. So we bit the bullet (well I went to sleep) – and my husband did the night shifts for a couple of weeks to get her used to the idea of no milk at night and it was a surprisingly easy transition – I think this is because we left it until Boo was really ready.
10. Toddler Feeds – Boo gently pats my chest as she feeds, so gentle, a slow patting almost like she is saying there-there, it is so sweet and when she looks at my face as she is doing it my heart just melts. Also the acrobatics, Boo is very adept at climbing on me and getting in all sorts of strange positions as she is feeding – she does make me laugh. Though I must say I am not a massive fan of having fingers stuck in my nose and mouth!
So there we are, my top ten breastfeeding moments, though I could go on and on, and I probably have as bigger list of breastfeeding most embarrassing moments too. Maybe I will share them one day when I am feeling brave and we can all have a good laugh!