Name and age of your nursling?
Cordelia Rose (Cora) - 1 year old
What does breastfeeding mean to you?
It means I don't have to wash more dishes. : ) Really though, breastfeeding for me has been incredibly practical. I'm always forgetting baby gear when I'm out or traveling, and it's so convenient that I can't forget the only thing Cora actually needs.
What has been your biggest breastfeeding challenge?
My biggest challenge was how much it hurt during the first month. I must have had some wimpy nipples because Cora's latch was great. It hurt every time she would latch on for at least 30 seconds. It makes my whole body tense up to even mention those 30 seconds. I remember thinking that the pain was worse than what I experienced in natural childbirth, but in hindsight, I'm not sure that is true. My second biggest challenge was also during those first few months, when Cora would latch and get frustrated and pop off. Then my sticky milk would spray everywhere and then Cora and I were both angry! I'm thankful that my supply and let-down has regulated and that doesn't happen anymore! My third challenge is ongoing - I am fairly terrible at pumping. The only way I have been able to figure out pumping is with a hand pump and even still, I don't get much milk.
What do you love most about breastfeeding?
Now that Cora is also eating solids, I realize how time consuming it is to think about, prepare, and actually feed Cora healthy food. I love that breastfeeding is the simplest and healthiest thing for me to give Cora. I also love that it means I slow down and spend time cuddling with her. From about 3 months on, nursing Cora has been one of the most relaxing things that I do in a day.
Who (or what) has offered you support in your journey?
1. Kari Kwinn's Breastfeeding Class - www.ensomama.com/breastfeeding.html
2. The Boob Group podcast - I listened to these constantly during my first month of breastfeeding
3. La Leche League Meetings
4. International Board Certified Lactation Consultants during my first days post partum in the hospital
5. Mom friends
6. Soothie Pads for sore nipples. http://www.amazon.com/Lansinoh-Soothies-Gel-Pads-Count/dp/B002KGHUL4
I have needed all 6 of these things to successfully breastfeed and this leads into the next question:
Any other advice for moms who want to breastfeed?
Learn as much as you can about breastfeeding and have support in place for when you have questions and need help.
Also, try your best to work through and overcome shyness about nursing in public. Breastfeeding, especially longterm, is much more convenient if you are willing to nurse in any setting.