I’m feeling better today after my near breakdown yesterday. I really think the only thing that keeps me in check these days are my CrossFit workouts. I had one last night and I felt so much better afterwards. I did “Fran” for the first time. It basically consisted of thrusters and modified pull ups. My time was 6:17 and I finished second out of my group. I ALWAYS finish last so that was a nice change. Gave me a little confidence and helped me blow off some steam.
So today, since I’m feeling okay and not totally crazy, I’d like refocus a bit and talk about breastfeeding and how it’s been for me. I have a very literal love/hate relationship with breastfeeding.
It’s been one hell of a ride. I knew from the moment I was pregnant that I wanted to breastfeed. I wanted to do everything in my power to make sure I was educated on how to breastfeed. I read blog after blog after blog about what real mothers did and how they succeeded. I enjoyed reading different women’s perspectives on what they did and how they did it and what they used to help them. It was really empowering. I soon realized that even after all my reading, it’s really about what works for you and your baby. I cannot express that enough.
I remember right after I had her, I knew I needed to feed her. I was so scared. I didn’t want it to hurt. And no one was helping me. I kept asking for help and no one in my hospital was stepping up to the plate. It was really aggravating because it was so important to me. So, 4 hours later, she finally latched on for the first time. While trying to educate myself on breastfeeding, I kept reading one statement over and over, “If it hurts, you are doing it wrong.” Well guess what, it fucking hurt. And it hurt bad. My little girl had a horrendous latch and and she is tongue tied and lip tied. I had cracked and bloody nipples the entire time in the hospital. A lactation consultant finally came to see me and she was a god send. I kept telling her that she was coming with me. I really did not know how I was going to do this at home, by myself, without the lactation consultant.
On top of all this, it took her FOREVER to eat. Because of her bad latch and being tongue and lip tied it took her longer to extract the milk. This was my schedule: Eat every two hours, 40 minutes per boob, total time 1 hour and 20 minutes. Within the 40 minutes she wasn’t eating, I would change her, and she would nap a little, but of course, only with me holding her. She screamed bloody freaking murder if she even though I was going to set her down. So, repeat that schedule every 2 hours, all day, for about 3 months. Do you blame me for being crazy?
The pain was really excruciating whenever she would initially latch on, like toe curing excruciating, but it eventually got better around 8 weeks. Her time did not improve until she was around 3 1/2 months old. She went to about 15 minutes per boob.
In the beginning, I hated breastfeeding. It was such a hassle and it was all me. My husband couldn’t help because he didn’t have tits. Sure, he could change her diaper, or change or cloths, or get me water, but he couldn’t feed her. I cannot even begin to express to you how many times I wanted to give her formula. And just for the record, I am not against formula at all. If I had to give my daughter formula to ensure she was eating and getting proper nutrition, then I would have given her formula. And OMGGGGG the cluster feeding. Kill me now. In her first 6 weeks of life, every Friday she would cluster feed from 5 pm – 10 pm. NONSTOP FEEDING FOR 5 HOURS. That’s probably what made me so crazy…
We are now 7 months in and I love breastfeeding because it’s the best feeling in the world knowing that I am able to give her breast milk. I enjoy it because it’s our time together. After a long day at work, I look forward to feeding her and relaxing with her. We are at about a 20 minute feeding time and sometimes….just sometimes…I miss the longer feeds. Never in a million year did I think I would love and enjoy breastfeeding. It did not come easy though. I don’t think it comes easy for anyone. If you can establish a breastfeeding relationship with your little one, then I KNOW you worked your ass off . Even if breastfeeding was really easy for you, I KNOW it’s still hard work. In the first couple of months of life, breastfeeding is a real bitch. Between the pain, the bloody nipples, the middle of the night feeds, the lack of sleep, the I WISH MY HUSBAND HAD TITS thoughts, I could go on forever….
My original goal was to breastfeed for 6 months and then switch over to pumping. FYI, I fucking hate pumping. That’s a whole other post for a whole other day. But, we have such a good routine and I don’t really see myself stopping anytime soon.
Trying for more happier posts 🙂
–The Kentucky Momma