Please don’t jump on a soap box or a bandwagon, I haven’t and won’t when it comes to breastfeeding. So if you are one of ‘those’ don’t continue reading, this post is just about me putting my thoughts down on paper. Each to their own, you do what works, and you shouldn’t need to explain.
I realize now as a mother, that back then I knew absolutely NOTHING about breastfeeding. Only one of my friends had a child and well, she just made it look so natural and easy. Breastfeeding is natural, of course it is, but it doesn’t come naturally that’s for sure. I didn’t know what ‘let down’ even meant. I didn’t know the emotions and pain that would come along too. I knew little of mastitis or how regularly to feed, what was normal and what wasn’t, or if in fact there was even a normal!
Being pregnant again, I have been pondering breastfeeding quite a bit lately. When I arrived home with Phoebe I thought I was doing pretty well. No one told me though what it would really be like, I don’t think anyone could have prepared me. She fed LOTS, and fell asleep LOTS while feeding. After a couple of weeks I remember saying to my partner, if this continues, I don’t think I’ll ever leave the house again, and these were my honest to god feelings. My anxiety began to rise, and panic attacks ensued. My baby girl could feel my stress and in turn became stressed. The mere sound of her crying for a feed would send my stomach into knots. It all became to much, to much for me mentally and in turn too much for her as well.
I made the decision to bottle feed, I’ll admit I did cry when I did it. Not because of having to give up, not because I felt I was a bad mother, but I think because I had never really thought much about it at all and wasn’t prepare. I guess I was in shock. I made the conscious decision that for the first three months, no one would be allowed to feed Phoebe except Hubby and I. We bonded, you can do that when you bottle feed you know? And still to this day, I believe it is one of the reasons why we are all so close.
I wish I was crazy passionate about breastfeeding, but try as I might, I just don’t think I am. I wish I knew that I was 100% committed next time around to breastfeeding, but I am not. I do know that I am trying to educate myself more.