Breastfeeding – Our Journey

I thought long and hard the title to give this post. I considered just calling it infant feeding but since I’m mainly going to be writing about breastfeeding I decided to call it that.

Breastfeeding seems to be such a controversial subject that divides mum’s today. Why is that though? Surely us mum’s should be sticking together, it’s hard enough being a new mum especially first time round without having to get into debates about feeding choices. Everything in parenting is a personal choice, a choice you make for your own child and no one else should concern themselves with your choice. Unfortunately sometimes those choices are taken away from us and that can cause emotions to run high at a time when hormones are already raging.
By talking about my journey I’m not trying to make anyone feel bad, far from it. I just want to write down my experience so that other mums thinking about breastfeeding may take inspiration from my journey.
When I was pregnant with the boy I was given leaflets about all sorts of things, being pregnant is paper overload, leaflets about every subject as well as advertising for products that you may or may not need. I dutifully looked through all the leaflets and didn’t think too much about breastfeeding at the time. I thought that once the time came I’d give it a go and if things didn’t work out then I wouldn’t be bothered there are other options. I didn’t think about the incredible bond I’d have with my baby, the rush of love I felt every time he latched on. The amazing feeling I got from knowing he got everything he needed from me to grow big and strong. It wasn’t an easy journey. I didn’t in a million years think I’d be sat feeding for the first few days solid. I didn’t expect to be up all night then hallucinating from the sheer wall of tiredness that hit me. I didn’t expect the pain upon latching on from the initial let down. Looking back I have no idea why I carried on in those early days. I think I was just determined to see it through to at least a week. A week came and went and I was still going. He was feeding every hour and I was so worried about going out anywhere in case he needed feeding. What would I do? It wasn’t that I was worried what others would say, I just didn’t want my breasts out on show for all to see. I hadn’t learnt in those early days how to feed discreetly so that I barely had anything on show. He was also feeding for long periods of time. Slowly but slowly, day by day we carried on and with help from the local feeding team and encouragement we had turned a few days feeding into a week, then a week into a few weeks. Gradually things got easier, the latch on pain had gone, I hadn’t noticed but it wasn’t there anymore.

There were bumps in out road, a fair few nights after being up for long periods I’d say with tears in my eyes “Thats it tomorrow I’m going shopping for milk and we’re stopping” but I never did. Someone once said to me that things always look better in the morning, and they always did. We’d get up, have breakfast, I’d feed you and I’d say just one more day. It certainly wasn’t easy, I found nights the hardest. I’d feel like I was the only one up in the world, so lonely. Thank goodness for technology these days, I was able to catch up on soaps and reading whilst feeding which really helped pass the time. I don’t know where the first 6 months went but before I knew it, it was time to start complimentary feeding. I carried on breastfeeding as by now it was easy and convenient in the daytime. No thinking about bottles or sterilising or how long I’d be out of the house for. I started to love it. I loved that every time I latched you on you’d reach up and stroke my face. I loved the rush of love I felt whilst feeding you. It became addictive.
I went back to work when the boy was 12 months old and he was only feeding morning and night then, as I did such long hours at work I’d often miss a feed here and there and gradually he became lass interested. One morning when the boy was 18 months old I was feeding him on our bed and he just didn’t want to feed, he was far more interested in watching television. That was it then I knew our journey was over. I was sad but happy all at the same time. Sad we’d almost certainly never feed again but happy he’d made his own choice in stopping. I couldn’t wait to feed again while I was pregnant with Flixster and thankfully his journey has been a little easier. I was so lucky to be able to catch his first ever feed on camera. I don’t have any feeding pictures of the myself and the boy which looking back I do regret but I’m making up for it this time.

In between the boys I went on the breastfeeding helper course run by the BfN, I loved it. I wanted to help other mums like myself to have an amazing journey, to know what to expect and what to be prepared for, but also how amazing feeding can be. I volunteer weekly at my local breastfeeding group. I’m not a helper to make mums feel bad about their feeding choice, I’m not bothered in the slightest by mums who chose not to breastfeed, I certainly would never put pressure on anyone to breastfeed. Like I said at the beginning it’s all about choice. But the message I want to bring by telling my story is that us mums should stick together what ever choice we make. Nothing about having a baby is easy lets all support each other.

breastfeedingFlixster’s first ever feed

If you want to read about the end of our journey then follow this link

22 thoughts on “Breastfeeding – My Journey – The highs and lows for us

  1. Lovely post and I completely agree with you. After a difficult start with feeding Monkey I’m not sure how I carried on either. Shame we can’t all support each other regardless of how we choose/ are able to feed, there are difficulties and positives whichever path you take :). Great post #BFingdiaries

    • Thank you so much for your positive feedback, I am passionate about breastfeeding but not to the exclusion of all other types of feeding. I just want other lovely mummies to be happy with their choice and seek help if and when they need it.

  2. Lovely post – definitely agree with you that us mums should stick together and help and support each other regardless of how we choose to feed our babies. Well done for persevering first time around with the struggles – sounds like you had a great approach by just taking it one day at a time and glad that breastfeeding Flixster was more straightforward and glad you managed to capture his first feed on camera too – what a lovely moment.

  3. Great post. It’s so nice to read about other breastfeeding journeys, (I am so nosey) I am currently feeding my daughter Boo who is 10 months old, and we have had a bit of a bumpy journey but I am so glad that I kept going, setting myself short goals helped massively.
    I know what you mean about night feeds in the early days, they are hard work, but I love that I never had to think about bottles and times etc.

    • 10 months thats amazing, well done you! Especially if you’ve not had an easy time of things. Just one more day was my motto for those early days. I am lucky to live in an area that has funding for paid peer supporters and without the one that visited my house I’m sure I wouldn’t have carried on. Thats why I volunteer now to try and help other mummies like myself.

  4. Very well said Lady! We should all stick together. Why feeding has become such a divide I’ll never understand when we parent differently anyway. Beautiful pic too, thanks so much for sharing with the #BFingDiaires

    • Thank you, I’m proud to have breastfed my two boys but that doesnt affect my position on how other people chose to feed their own babies. Let’s all stick together!

  5. Great journey to share. I think it’s amazing to share our experiences so others can be inspiring. So happy that your journey continued and you got to experience such an amazing bond. Thanks for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme

    • Thanks Jenny. I am aware how difficult some journeys can be which is why I volunteer now to try my best to help other mummies, but my underlying message is lets stick together. #sharewithme

  6. Lovely post and beautiful photo! You’re so right that us mum’s should be sticking together, but unfortunately the breast vs bottle debate continues to be newsworthy. I’ve exclusively bf all three of mine and wouldn’t have it any other way, but I don’t think any less of my formula feeding friends #sharewithme

    • Thanks for reading and your comments. The newspapers always love a good headline that creates debate and its such a shame that they sway to one extreme or the other with breast or bottle feeding stories instead of giving a balanced view!

  7. Great post and so glad you had a great journey in the end! I wrote a post a while ago about how I just didn’t get on with BF with both of mine, but I still like reading about successful stories too. You’re right when you say we all need to support each other, and our choices, that is half the battle to staying a sane and happy parent is to feel comfortable with what we choose/ how things turn out! #sharewithme

    • Thanks for your comments. Like you say its important to be happy and confident with our choices and that comes from support of others. There are far to many other things in the world to be worrying about without feeling judged by other mums.

  8. Fantastic post and a beautiful picture! I knew from the outset that I wanted to breastfeed, but I’m with you. I never imagined how special the time could be! It’s strange, sometimes I miss it. The bonding, the primal feeling of doing what our bodies were designed to do…it meant more to me than I realized it would!

  9. what a lovely post and that picture is beautiful! I would love to do a course like the one you mentioned, I did look into it but didn’t have the confidence to go any further! Us mums should definitely stick together, I currently breastfeed my 20 month old son and have had a couple of comments mostly from family members but I think as long as we are both happy then thats all that matters! Your blog is lovely by the way (I’m a big bunting fan!) Becky #sharewithme

    • Why should anyone else be bothered if you are still feeding your 20 month old? A massive well done to you! The WHO recommends breastfeeding to at least 2 years old and in many countries that is the norm so your doing great. You should get yourself signed up for a helper course if you can, your experience would be amazing to help another new mummy out there. You can do it! Thanks for the kind comments about my blog, it means a lot to me that you like the style. I’m pretty much bunting obsessed, it makes everything seem so cheery!

  10. You did so well – I’ve read so many blog posts about the feeding experience since I started blogging and written one about my own feeding experience too but you’re right we’re all different and no one should be made to feel bad about choices were right for them and their babies. X #sharewithme

    • Thanks for your comments, I really stand by the fact we should stick together and not make each other feel about about anything to do with parenting. It’s not a competition, we should be supporting each other!

  11. What a lovely post. I’m currently breastfeeding my 4th baby and each and every journey with my babies has been different. This one is probably the hardest yet. x x

    • Four beautiful babies, wow! And all breastfed too, amazing dedication. I’d have to agree with journeys being different, even though I’d fed once and it felt familiar Flixster is a different feeder to the boy. Ill be turning to you for inspiration if we have any more children.

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