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Choosing to breastfeed was an very easy decision but it wasn't what I planned to do originally.

Before I got pregnant with my son I just assumed that I would formula feed. Everyone in my family did it and at the time none of my friends had children so I didn't think of doing it any other way. Once my husband & I decided to TTC I did some research. I found my decision to formula feed was ignorant. I read a ton of studies and articles on the benefits of breastfeeding and I knew that breastfeeding was the way to go. So that began my journey into the world of breastfeeding.

I set my goal at 1 year. I wanted something I could obtain and if I made it to that goal I'd set a new one.

During my pregnancy I became friends with several breastfeeding mom's. This was my very first experience with it. All of them had a perfect breastfeeding relationships with their little ones. Seeing them made me fall in love with the idea of nursing my child & I was so excited to do it with my own.

After a long labor and what seemed like forever of pushing my son Kegan was here. The first thing we did once he was all cleaned up was nurse. He took to it like a champ. He latched on right away & needed no help what so ever. It was the most amazing feeling. I knew I was giving him the best.

When Kegan was about 2 weeks old he developed a mild case of Thrush which went away fairly quickly. Thankfully I never got it! That was the only problem that we encountered so far in our nursing relationship.

Around Kegan's 9 month birthday we found out that we were expecting. This caught us very off guard. We were using birth control, 2 kinds in fact, so this was a huge shock to us. I was worried about our breastfeeding relationship. I wasn't ready to give it up and neither was he. I did more research and found out that many women nurse through their pregnancies. Since we weren't ready to give it up this sounded like a good plan for us. I picked up a copy of "Adventures in Tandem Nursing" and read it cover to cover in a few days. That book gave me so much information on nursing during my pregnancy and nursing both my children once I gave birth.

Nursing during my pregnancy wasn't hard. I did deal with snore nipples which I had never dealt with before. A little after my son turned a year my supply was completely gone & Kegan was just comfort nursing. All he wanted to do was comfort nurse. I can honestly say that there were a few times that I hated to nurse. It was painful & sometimes it would make me feel sick to my stomach. I knew that this was all pregnancy related so we chugged on knowing that in a few months it would all be back to normal.

My daughter was 16 days late. She didn't want to come out but when she decided it was ready she came FAST! I pretty much breastfed her right away. It was amazing. I was in shock there she was here and in shock that I was feeding another tiny little person. I was so used to feeding my son.

I was nervous that my already sore nipples would be even more sore with the new baby. I was 100% wrong. Nursing my daughter was a breeze with no pain what so ever. Her latch, since she is a tiny thing, isn't as strong as my sons so the pain didn't exist. My nipples were already prepared I guess you could say to breastfeeding. Of course she was a champ just like her brother.

I didn't know that women had problems breastfeeding until my son was about 6 weeks old. None of my friends dealt with it & I didn't deal with it. So when my daughter was born I kept a positive attitude that it would be easy and sure enough it's easy as pie. She latched on great and has been doing great ever since. She eats a lot during the day and sleeps amazing at night. Now only if her brother could get ques from her on how to sleep.

Now Tandem nursing, that is a challenge. It's more trying to nurse them together that is the challenge. Trying to find a comfortable position for all of us is a difficult task that we are still trying to master. Kegan is very jealous of her when she nurses otherwise he is great with her. So I try to nurse the both of them together to ease the jealousy. Most of the time I need the help of my husband to get us into a comfortable position but I know with more practice we will be able to find something that works for us.

My nursing relationship with my children has been wonderful. No problems with that. But I have had little support in my efforts to give my children what is best for them. Besides my amazing friends I only have 2 people in my family who are supportive. My husband and my father. I still find it funny that 2 men are more supportive than all the women in my family.

When my son was born I was asked by my mom how long I planned to breastfeed. I said my goal is a year & I'll see how it goes from there. She said to me a year is plenty long and it's "gross" any longer. For quite sometime I was told by many members of my family that I need to feed my son formula so I could have a night with my husband. I did pump but since I am a SAHM there wasn't much of a need. I always refused. I see no point in putting that into my child's body.

My husband who has always been behind me 100% on my efforts to breastfeed said to me "You should breastfeed Kegan until he is at least 2. He is very happy with his booby milk." I am so grateful to have my other half be so supportive.

Now my dad is the other one who is supportive. I have to say it was very strange to find out that he was behind me. He has two younger children with my step-mom. She nursed both of them for 3 months and went straight to formula. When I told my dad I was pregnant he asked me about nursing. I said that I planned to nurse Kegan through my pregnancy & that I planned to nurse both of the children and let Kegan self-wean. I prepared myself for the worst. My dad & I have never been that close and I just assumed that since my step-mom, Nancy, didn't breastfeed very long he would think it's strange like almost every one else. I was pleasantly surprised to hear him say "I wish Nancy would have nursed the boys longer. It's so good for them. I think it's cool you are going to continue to nurse Kegan." It was short but made my month having my dad say that.

Then I had my wonderful friends. They have always been so positive about their nursing relationships and feel the same way that I do when it comes to our views on the subject.

Even with such little support I was able to stand up for myself to my family and random strangers who didn't agree with my decision. I have done lots of research on why breast is best and feel confident to speak my mind on the subject.

I'm excited to continue my breastfeeding journey with my daughter. Going from nursing one to nursing two has been quite a change & can be a challenge but it's been an amazing experience.

Comments

happy_just_2_be
Feb. 25th, 2008 03:54 pm (UTC)
I am sure I will be the same way someday. Especially since I work. I am sure everyone will just tell me to formula feed, but I am all about breastfeeding!

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