After having a second child and going through the breastfeeding experience again, I think I’m in a position now to share with you what it helped me the most when I really struggled with breastfeeding my baby. If you’re a new mum that have chosen this option and everything is not going as smooth as the parenting magazines usually show you, you might want to read this:
#1 It’s ok not to be ok
I can’t remember how many times I read and heard about the wonders of breastfeeding, the benefits on your child’s health and development, the bond you build with those precious moments. All that is true, but let me tell you what it’s true as well: the stress you go through when you and the newborn are adapting to each other’s position, the latching that never happens, the wound created because of not doing it properly. During the first 2 months with my daughter my breasts were so sore I couldn’t even wear a t-shirt on. So obviously, I didn’t go out that much, cause I wasn’t going to leave the house topless!
I felt terrible because what I had expected to feel didn’t match at all what I was feeling. How could it be so wonderful if it hurt that much? Wasn’t a mum good enough that I didn’t want to sacrifice myself and continue suffering? One day, after counseling with Sam and praying a lot about it, I came across some information about breastfeeding and a support group. It clearly said: If it hurts when you breastfeed then there’s something wrong going on. Either the position or your baby’s mouth, something, but breastfeeding shouldn’t hurt at all. So please, to the new mum out there: follow that advice, don’t feel terrible with yourself and seek for help. It’s ok not to feel good about something that is physically hurting you so you need to solve whatever is stopping you from going through that wonderful experience with your baby.
#2 Practice makes the difference
When you’re out with your baby and you’re a new mum you think all the eyes will be on you just right before you loose your bra so you get a bit anxious about the whole situation, your baby gets hungrier and hungrier and therefore it gets harder and harder for him to latch properly. But let me tell you one thing, after a couple of months you get so used to it and you don’t bother that much, you feel more relax and everything runs more smoothly. I don’t even use the nursing blanket with E anymore, I don’t mind it, but he gets quite annoyed with it, so if I’m alright with the situation I will just pull my t-shirt up a bit and problem solved. Seriously, don’t worry about it that much, the more often you do it the more used to it you will be. 🙂
#3 You don’t need to go through it alone
This one is on me. Having my second baby on a different country was quite a scary experience and I knew I wouldn’t have the same breastfeeding support groups that I used to attend back in Barcelona, but I learnt the lesson with my first child and I searched for help on the very first week E was born. Luckily for me he didn’t have tongue tight and I knew that breastfeeding shouldn’t hurt, as I already said before, so as soon as I started to feel a bit of pain I went to my local group. As soon as I arrived a very friendly lady guided me to a very comfortable sofa and showed me the different positions I could try to make it easier. I breastfed E right there, she game me a few tips I had forgotten because it had been a while since breastfeeding J, and since then everything started to get better; to the point where after a month, E and I would be completely adapted to one another. Don’t think because you’ve done it with your first child you won’t need help with the following ones. It is always good to refresh yourself and even learn new ways to do it.
I hope these tips of advice will help you somehow. They helped me. And now I can say I enjoy breastfeeding my baby. I love when he giggles right after the fed, I don’t know what makes him laugh to be honest…haha, but it is super cute when he does it. Most important, I am treasuring those moments forever.