It is Breastfeeding Awareness Month and though I am usually not for celebrating random holidays and months, I have been thinking about nursing lately. I have been talking to the girls about how the baby gets food now while he/she is in Mama’s tummy. And it has naturally led to discussion of what the baby will eat when he/she is out of Mama’s tummy. We have discussed what we think the baby likes to eat from Mama…it has been fun!
But even as I have these fun conversations with the girls and I catch a little bit of their excitement, I get more an more ready for nursing. I know a lot of women are nervous about nursing or they see it as a burden, but I am really, really excited about getting to nurse this next little one. That is not to say that it is easy, but I simply can’t wait to do it again!
So I thought I would share with you what I love about nursing my little ones:
There is simply nothing more personal to create an intimate relationship with your new little one than nursing! Even as I dreamt of being pregnant again, I literally would hold my hands up as though I was snuggling a little one on my chest every time I talked about it. I simply could not imagine that my nursing and baby-holding days were over. And God has blessed us again with that to look forward to. I can’t wait to get to know this little one through nursing and holding him/her close to me for hours a day.
Breastfeeding is NOT always easy, but there is something so wonderful about learning something together with your baby. Your baby is learning a whole new way to get food and you are learning a whole new way of feeding your baby. You will discover positions and patterns that work for you and baby. And the things you learn will be different with each baby. But as you study baby and baby gets to know you, the connection you form will really help to cement that amazing bond.
With our first daughter we had a little bit of a rough start with breastfeeding. And honestly she never got the perfect latch which caused us to finish nursing her a little earlier than we had hoped (7 months). But after 3 weeks of struggling with breast pain for me and low weight gains for G, we found out about a breastfeeding support group in our area and we went. It was AMAZING! We found out that G was eating (a lot) but she just had a very, very fast metabolism and was working through her food very quickly and not gaining a lot.
When we had W (our 2nd daughter), we were so concerned about getting a good latch from the beginning and were concerned about her lack of interest in eating that we called our lactation specialist for a home visit on the day we got back from the hospital. She came over and helped us to get just the right latch and W started eating and growing SO FAST!
If you are considering nursing or are struggling to get it going, I highly recommend connecting with a local breastfeeding group led by a lactation specialist. Groups like these offer good advice, help, and a way to connect with other women in the same stage of life.
There is something about nursing that requires one to slow down the pace for much of the day (for the first months for sure) that is appealing to me. It is part of the bond that is formed with baby, it is part of taking the time to just breathe. In fact, I am actually looking forward to late night feedings because they add quiet to what is already a slow process. I want to take time to soak in all the little moments with this little one because they are fleeting. I am happy that breastfeeding fosters a slower pace with baby.
Seriously! I do kind of love the accouterments that go along with nursing. We are in the market for another breast pump this time around (we sold everything! just a few short weeks before we found out we were pregnant) and I love the technology that goes into these little life-savers! I also love a good nursing bra, some washable breast pads, and good nursing tops! I kind of get a little excited thinking about all the fun new things. I will be sharing my favorite nursing essentials soon, so look out for that!
Did you nurse your little ones? Are you nursing right now? What is/was your favorite thing about breastfeeding your baby?