The moment I found out I was pregnant with my first baby I had so many thoughts and worries about everything that came with having a newborn baby. How shall I feed it? What if I’m not good enough? How do I care for a newborn baby so delicate and small 24/7? I bought all the books ranging from each stage of pregnancy, breastfeeding, new mothers. Scowered through Pintrest and blogs reading up on parenting and spoke to a lot of my mummy friends for advice. You name it, I read an article on it.
Even though breastfeeding is very pushed in England. I didn’t force it upon myself. My mindset was if I can do it great if not it’s not the end of the world. Luckily I was one of the very few people who found breastfeeding so easy. As soon as Archie was born and put on my chest he latched onto my right boob straight away and fed for 45 minutes. It was the best feeling in the world being able to nourish my perfect little boy knowing that everything he was having to make him grow big and strong was coming from me. It came so naturally to us straight from the get go and created our unbreakable bond.
I know that is not always the case with other mothers and a lot of people do struggle with latch, positioning and even tongue tie.
After 2 days of brest feeding I got extremely sore on my right side to the point where I couldn’t even let Archie touch it.
I spoke to my midwife who sent out a breast feeding expert to my house to help. Upon watching me feed Archie and monitoring my latch and positioning she noticed that I had in fact blistered on the under side of my nipple. This is what was causing me so much pain. This was due to Archie’s first feed, we were both newbies at breastfeeding and my latch and positioning were incorrect, added with the long 45 minute feed. I had caused my nipples to blister and bleed. Because of this pain and discomfort I was scared to feed Archie on the right side so always stuck to the left. This caused my right side to develop mastitis (an inflammation in the breast tissue) because it was not getting emptied.
It was a never ending circle for around 3 weeks. Mastitis came because I was scared to feed that side and wasn’t emptying my breast but when I fed I blistered so I stopped altogether.
From around 8 weeks into feeding, it was just easier to feed Archie purely from the left side. My right boob went back to normal, it stopped producing as much milk, it was enough for a top up but never for a full feed. So Archie and I carried on our breast feeding journey from the left side (with the occasional right top up) all the way up until he turned 6 months.
At 6 months I didn’t want to stop feeding him at all. He stopped himself. One day (at his christening) it was a beautiful hot summers day and Archie just would not latch. He was tired and hungry but he wasn’t having any of the boob. I pulled out an emergency bottle I had to hand (with formula) and he drank it down in seconds. That night for his bedtime feed he refused the boob again so a bottle replaced that feed. From then on he would only allow me to feed him for his first feed every morning for the next 6 weeks before refusing my milk altogether.
Archie is now a happy healthy baby on formula and food. I absolutely loved our breastfeeding journey and it makes me sad that it has come to an end. Yes at times it was very hard. Especially in the early days. But we made it. And im so proud of myself for not only sticking through the tough times, but for being able to nourish my baby and give him everything he needs. I honestly feel that breastfeeding Archie gave us a bond that is unbreakable. There is no feeling like it.
Love Tilly & Archie xx