Updated: Sep 5, 2021
After nearly 10 months and almost 1,000oz of frozen milk, our breastfeeding journey has come to an end.
When I was pregnant, my plan was just to breastfeed if I could. However, I didn’t know just how difficult it would be.
Due to a number of factors, I started pumping when X was 2 weeks old. It wasn’t an easy decision, and definitely broke my heart to realize that nursing just wasn’t in the cards for us. But I was fortunate that I was able to produce enough milk and still be able to provide that for him. Which was what kept me going.
Exclusively pumping was hands down one of the hardest, most selfless things I have ever done. The countless hours hooked up to my pump, washing and sterilizing bottles, and feeding. The clogged ducts. A hellish week of being incredibly sick with mastitis. The overproducing and engorgement. The literal blood, sweat, and tears.
I am so so so thankful for my incredible husband getting up in the middle of the night with me those first several months to bottle feed while I pumped. I certainly would’ve given up early on without his support.
All of this to say, even though our breastfeeding journey didn’t pan out the way I thought it would, I am so proud of myself for doing what I did. The support and education out there is seriously lacking for women who want to breastfeed (whether that means nursing or pumping) and honestly there is also a lack of support and education for women who formula feed. I have found myself saying “fed is best” maybe to make myself feel better, or to justify my choices. But the truth is - women deserve better. There is so much pressure and shame around how we feed our babies, but seeking help isn’t accessible to everyone. And the emphasis is always placed on the baby, and never the mother
s mental health (which needs to change).
So to all the moms out there who’s breastfeeding journey didn’t go the way you hope - I see you. If you didn’t feel supported in your choices or your journey, I am sorry. It isn’t easy. You’re doing an amazing job. No matter what route you chose, you did what was best for you and your baby. And for that, I’m proud of you ❤️
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