To the outsider, breastfeeding probably seems like a really weird thing to get all pumped up about (ha, pumped..see what I did there?). I mean, it’s just flopping a boob out to feed a baby, right? If you have never done it, it’s impossible to impart just how challenging it can be.
In the early days, we used a nipple shield. It was a huge pain in the booty because I always had to have this little clear rubber thing around, my dog liked to steal them and chew them up, and they were messy and kept popping off and spraying milk everywhere. They made breastfeeding outside of the house tedious as well. It took 2 1/2 months before I could wean him from it, and that felt like an eternity. I dealt with all sorts of fun like engorgement, leaking all over the place all the time, going through bra pads like crazy, cracking and painful nipples. In those early weeks, I hardly remember a time where Bonkers wasn’t latched on to my breast. He was a “barracuda”, the lactation consultant said. He would dive in like he’d never eaten before every time, chomp on, and stay latched for hours. He slept beside me all night long for the first 6 months, nursing on me like an all-night buffet. It was challenging, but it was beautiful.
After everything else in parenting was coming natural, breastfeeding was downright hard. It wasn’t as easy and natural at first as you would assume for something totally biological. But it became something so incredible. My solution to everything. An all-in-one comfort and nutrition package, giving Bonkers anything and everything he needed to keep him content and happy. It’s now to the point where the idea of quitting someday fills me with emotion and sadness. I never feel as close to Bonkers as when he’s nursing.
It’s important to celebrate successes in parenthood, because all day long we’re barraged with articles and comments about how we’re doing things wrong. I might not be the most perfect parent, but I feel great about my nursing relationship with my son. And that’s worthy of a week-long recognition. So, happy World Breastfeeding Week for all the mamas out there who nursed or pumped, for however long, whether they’re still nursing or they’ve weaned. You’re amazing. <3