In lieu of world breastfeeding week last week, I felt it is time for me to finally write about my experience with nursing. J is 10 months old now and there have been so many times where I wanted to write about breastfeeding. So many posts that I started and then deleted or written in my head, but never typed out.
He is Baby number two that I nursed. With e I always felt that I was too "new" at this, couldn't and shouldn't write about it. And this time I kept feeling that no one would want to read another story about another mom feeding her wee little babe. And what about the ones that don't want to or can't nurse their babies. Wouldn't it be insensitive to write about the benefits of breastfeeding? I could hear the "here we go again" sigh in my mind, every time I actually sat down and started writing this post.
There are so many great posts and articles out there, we don't need another one, do we? There are also so many wonderful articles about motherhood, discipline, and child rearing out there as well. I'm not here to tell you what you are or aren't doing is anything but fine.
What I do know is that I want to capture this moment in time, wrap it up and store it for later. When the kids are grown and have flown our nest, I want to come back here and remember those days.
Because these days pass too quickly. In the hustle and bustle of our daily lives, the moments I feel overwhelmed with exhaustion, I want to remember that they are only short lived.
Some days I feel that breastfeeding is the greatest thing since before sliced bread. My body is sustaining and feeding another tiny human being. First by God's grace this little human is formed inside of me and grows over months until one day, he is ready to come out. And from then on, for the first six months of his life, by God's grace I produce enough food to nourish this tiny little baby. It is quite mind boggling if you think about it.
Then on other days I can't wait to be done nursing. And as soon as I think these words, I regret that I do, because I know my babies are only small for a short time. But on some days nursing feels more like a burden than a gift. I choose my wardrobe based on nursing. Some of my clothes I have not worn in I don't know how long. During the first few months I often times sprayed milk during nighttime feedings. I have returned from work with a soaked ( fortunately black) shirt before. And anytime someone else would watch my baby, I still have to pump for relief.
During the first months of nursing, I have felt my emotions going wild. I have cried because I couldn't produce enough milk, especially during growth spurts. I have cried because I felt inadequate and worried. My body was supposed to produce enough milk to sustain my baby. I have cried when my babies would begin to wean, because it meant that their dependence on me would lessen.
I have sat up at night with my babies, trying to stay awake while they are nursing back to sleep. Their hands softly rubbing my skin. We give each other comfort, when nursing. We understand each other, without words, when nursing. My son gazing up at me, searching for my eyes, his fingers reaching up to my lips. These are the moments I always want to remember, with both of my children. The good moments as well as the bad moments. Because these are the moments through which I learn to love myself. These are the moments that remind me I'm only human.