Friday, January 8, 2010

Breastfeeding Blues/Boobs of awesomeness

I am wondering today if there is such a thing as the "breast feeding blues"? Miss Olivia is the first child out of 4 whom I have fully breastfed till she was 6 months old and we introduced solids. I attempted to feed Mikey (3rd baby out of 4) but with little success with him having Hypotonia (low muscle tone) it was impossible for him to suck heartily at the breast and my supply dwindled down I pumped for 4 months and borrowed my friend Sarah's boobs for a feed but as post natal depression and a feelings of inadequacy and detachment set in as I felt like I was feeding a pump not a baby I gave up in despair and switched to formula,(NOTE in those 4 months I also had my appendix removed and wasn't able to feed Mikey for 3 days which did not help the supply situation even with pumping and medications)

Today however as I sat and marveled at the cleverness of my boobs and Gods design for woman as Miss Livvy drank away I also had a feeling of sadnes
s wash over me knowing that Livvy will be turning one in a couple months and that as she grows older her dependence on me for her nutritional and comfort needs will lessen as she moves into eating more solids and drinking water and juice. While my plan is at the moment to continue to feed her till she is 18 months then re assess her and me at the time to see if we continue til she is two, I also know that plans change and can never really be set in stone.

The more I thought about it the angrier I got, when I was pregnant with Malinda (child number 1) I was told by my mother,... (whom at the time was the most important person in my life as I was 19 and a single mum to be) that breastfeeding was to difficult and that I would be much better off at my age just formula feeding. She continued to tell me this throughout the pregnancy and added how hard it was for her trying to breastfeed and how much trouble she had with attempting to feed my brothers and I and that I was setting myself up for failure. I being naive and young believed her and never gave it a go with my daughter, in fact I became terrified of the idea of breastfeeding and even repulsed by the sight of it becoming physically sick if someone would feed their child in front of me gagging involuntary. NO I am not joking ask Sarah Mc who can verify this. I got married and fell pregnant almost right away and again did not even attempt to feed Peter who went straight on to a bottle after being born. Then my good friend Sarah had her baby Iris and I watched at first in horror but then in admiration as she breastfed her daughter without a hitch it seemed so natural and even beautiful that when I fell pregnant with baby number 3 Mikey I thought well if Sarah can do it so can I LOL!!! Whilst my experience with feeding Mikey for those 4 months was not a great one (heehee I just remembered once feeding Mikey on the breast at my mothers place and her giving me a light blanket to cover up with which always makes me laugh given she was present for all 4 of my children's births and saw a whole lot more then my boobies) I came away from it feeling more comfortable with who I was as a woman and confident I had given it my best shot and at least had the experience of breastfeeding as Mikey was going to be my last child HAHAHA.
But as you all know at the end of those 4 months I became pregnant again with Olivia. I had a horrible pregnancy emotionally with Liv I was so not ready to have another child at all let alone so quickly after Mikey being born but here she was on the way. I decided that I was going to breastfeed and was so annoyed by a family member when I was told why would I bother after all the difficulties I had with Mikey GGGRRR!!! Ignoring the comments and criticisms I was determined I was going to make it work and my husband and I thought it would really help bond Olivia and I once she was born given I was having such trouble bonding throughout the pregnancy. Olivia was born and on the breast within 15 minutes of being on the outside LOL Actually she came out with her mouth open almost looking for the boob, and she has remained there ever since and not one issue has arisen since I began feeding her 9 months ago, I have fallen in love with breastfeeding and as previously stated marvel at the awesomeness of my breasts and the fact they sustained my daughter for her first 6 months completely on their own. But again the sadness, she is the last child I will breastfeed, nope no more surprises hubby had the snip and I am sad, angry and feel completely ripped off for not having the support and encouragement to feed my other children. While I am grateful for formula especially in Mikeys case where I felt I just could not do it anymore, there really is no comparison in terms of bottle feeding vs holding your baby snugly across your chest and watching as she nurses from your body.

My 3 other children are all happy healthy and content little monkeys however I do feel like I let them down and should of sought out more information for myself like I have now that I have been feeding Livvy, rather then taking the word of one person who had had a bad experience. Hence the boobie blues question.

Also wanna say a huge THANKS to Meegs, Sarah Mc and Sazz whose long term breastfeeding efforts inspire my boobs to greatness LOL Meaning I think you are all amazing mums who are continuing to give your babies/toddlers the very best start and I hope I can follow in your footsteps. Also Thanks to God for his wonderful creation of the female body and for boobies.


  1. hugs leesa... i know exactly how you feel.. i have low supply and need to take medication twice a day to maintain enough to feed stella... however, with xave this wasn't picked up.. so within 2 weeks he was on full formula feeds. I understand the guilt, the regret and the sadness... i also understand the feelings you are having now as liv approaches her 1st birthday. I was going to feed stels for 6 months but as that approached i bumped it to 12 months but now as that approaches i find myself like you, saying 18 months then we see again.. i know in my heart that a feed morning and night until she is 2 will be just fine with me, but yet i still let the disapproval of those around me creep in.
    Lets support each other, as breastfeeding mothers of last children, who know how it feels to have it ripped away from you without your real consent... in feeding the beautiful ladybugs who love their boobies oh so much.

  2. Thats sounds like a great idea to me Kint! We can be boobie and bug buddies xoxox Thank you for your comments and support!! *hug*

  3. It's been truly amazing to watch your attitude towards breastfeeding change over the past few years. You've put in so much work getting to where you are so I'm glad things are going so well for you. I love being able to talk to you about BF now and know that you "get" why I love it.
    xxoo Sarah

  4. Thanks so much for sharing your story Lees. OMG I got such a happy surprise at the end when I scored a mention *mwah* I'm really touched that my journey has meant something to you too.

    This blog post is so inspiring, to all those who think they can't feed because they didn't feed their first or their second etc etc! What a great peice to have on the internet for all to learn from. And you're the reason people like me and Kint are becoming breastfeeding counsellors (and Sarah will...just wait, she so will LOL), the more women like the four of us means less women will have to deal with those feelings of grief and sadness you and Kint have faced *hugs*

    A very inspiring piece of writing.

  5. Skinny Marie this is an awesome piece of your heart that you have written down for us all to see. i didn't even want to BF K! I felt so pushed into and at the same time so unknowledgable about it all, i thought ok i;ll feed for two weeks to shut them all up! then it was 3 mths, then 6, then 12 and you know the rest! Its such an empowering thing to do and you are amazing in the way you have changed your thinking about BF. Drew is still BF morning and night and we are all happy with that so you have to do what is right for you and Lady Bug! You have all of our support! Love you xxx



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