Hello ladies. A while back someone posted a lovely message about why she loves breastfeeding, and it sparked a beautiful reflection on the joys of breastfeeding. I loved reading it especially because...hmm, actually I didn't love reading it. Although I would happily add my two cents to that thread now, at the time my response would have been "Why I hate breastfeeding." Now, as things are better for us, I can do so more with humour (I hope!), kind of like "10 things I hate about you" (if anyone remembers that teen version of Shakespeare).
For me it was never a question about whether or not I would breastfeed. I mean, do the math: a baby, two breasts; these things go together. Plus, everyone said how easy it was, how portable it was, how bonding and beautiful it was. Not to mention it's just the healthiest choice. So, this is for new breastfeeding Moms who maybe don't have the idyllic BF experience that they are sold (i.e. most everyone) before signing up!
10 things I hate about breastfeeding:
10. Cabbage Leaves: Never in my life expected to wear cabbage on my breasts. But painful, unrelieved engorgement is the option. Learn to love green cabbage, and DO remove that big vein in the middle of the leaf.
9. Nipple Sandwiches: having a complete stranger grab my boob and pinch my nipple into a "sandwich" for my lo to nurse off when the engorgement was at it's worst.
8. Muscle Spasms: my neck is forever changed, even with MyBrestFriend providing support, from peering down at my lo, checking and rechecking and readjusting her latch.
7. Milk Stains: and I don't mean on my clothes, that's a given. I mean the stain of milk spray across the leather sofa that still shows months later.
6. Mastitis: Moo. Hearing my mother, who lives on a ranch, say to me after 4 battles with plugged ducts and one case of mastitis: "Well, dear, some cows just tend towards mastitis. Every spring, it's the same cows who get it." Okay, Mom.
5. Mastitis: Did I already mention this one? It's worth mentioning again. Chills, fever, multiple pairs of pajamas, multiple sheet changes, a feverish fog for days. Yeah, love it. And then, of course, the fear of thrush when given antibiotics.
4. Nipple Twisting: I have yet to read a book titled "The violence of breasteeding." Hmm, market niche, perhaps I could write it. Or perhaps it's already in the baby's handbook: "Twist, turn, scrape down nipple, then bite down hard. Mom really reacts to that!" And mine isn't even getting teeth yet.
3. Cat Scratch Fever: Yep, that was my thread. Oh, yeah. Breasts and belly that look like hamburger for a few weeks. Consider bypassing the trimming of nails in favour of the trimming of baby's fingers (but only for a second or two).
2. "I had my baby on steak by three months": Honestly, why on earth does someone look at a perfectly healthy, chubby, happy baby and then feel the need to tell baby's Mom everything she's doing wrong in feeding her baby? For hours?
1. Worry: I have never worried so much in my life about my bodily fluids and whether or not I have enough of one. Oh, the stress!
Happy BF, everyone!