Breastfeeding: Is Breast Best?

This is a breastfeeding post I originally wrote as a guest post on plus2point4; where you can read some cracking articles.

After watching Is Breast Best? tonight I thought it may be worth reposting on my own blog to share a positive experience of breastfeeding as BB and I start the approach to our one year marker of exclusively breastfeeding.  Apparantly I am in the 3 of the population who exclusively feed past a year.

Please let me know what you think….

Written when BB was seven months old…..

“Like most things in life breastfeeding was not what I expected, it has far surpassed all my expectations and I feel I may have become a happy addict.

It looked really easy when I saw my girlfriends feed their babies, yet when I  latch on my rather beautiful baby I tended to resemble a big breasted king kong trying to navigate a mouse up to the nipple on the top of the empire state building.Not to mention that when she did latch on it felt like the mouse was trying to tear the nipple off the top of the empire state building with its toothless mouth.

It was all a bit of a kerfuffle really.Beautiful baby was born by emergency c section seven months ago, and as myself and fifteen other midwives had failed to get the twins to latch on I had gone into hospital prepared. I had a breast pump, nipple shields, nipple cream, and warm hands ready to knead my bosom to encourage the milk flow.

Turned out for her first feed she didn’t need anything but me, she lay skin to skin and latched on perfectly and it felt like how beautiful looks.It went a bit pear shaped after that, back on the ward she couldn’t latch on again until day four when a rather skilled midwife taught her what to do whilst I lay back and thought of breast milk. Until day four I became rather close with a medula breast pump and a syringe.

I was warned because I am particularly well endowed but at the same time not particularly ‘pert’ I may find breastfeeding hard work.Never had a truer word been said. For eight weeks my breasts worked overtime creating an oversupply that I couldn’t control.  Mastitis became my arch enemy and cold cabbage became my bosom buddy.  The stream of antibiotics I took caused me to get repetitive thrush in both my section scar tissue and my nipples.

One day I sat tears streaming down my face and dripping off my nose as I tried to nurse through a blocked duct and he who helped create them said;

“Just stop, its enough”.

I am no martyr to pain, in fact a paper cut can cause me to sob but for the first time in my life I realised that the enjoyment I had when nursing my daughter without infection was more significant than the pain I felt nursing through infection.  So me and beautiful baby decided to stick with it.

Seven months on I still struggle with trying to discreetly latch her on; you may notice the odd eclipse of the sun now and then when I begin to feed. I still love every feed and know this journey was right for me and bb.  It and she was more than worth it.

I figure I’ll stop when she goes to college.”

She seems to be doing well on it….

21 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Miriam
    Apr 13, 2011 @ 21:08:50

    aw, well done you to get through so much!
    I had cracked nip, blocked ducts and mastitis to get through. The first 6 weeks were hell.
    But then it suddenly stopped being hell and became a joy.
    I fed my Darling B until she was 14 months.
    My Dervish J is still feeding (morning and night feeds. Occasional afternoon snacks) and he is nearly 2.5yrs.
    Don’t quite know how that happened, but I don’t want to stop him. I hoped he would self wean but it doesn’t seem likely any time soon.


    • janeblackmore
      Apr 13, 2011 @ 21:39:31

      I remember in the time before breastfeeding seeing a woman feed her 10month old and exclaiming to he who helped create them ‘gosh hes a bit old for that!’ ironic that I know have a ten month old and show no real signs of wanting to stop. I am not what i would consider to be an ‘extreme’ breastfeeder but it works for me and BB and I see no reason to stop because society tells me what i am doing is ‘gross’.

      In saying that I do miss underwired bras….


  2. theWriteRach
    Apr 13, 2011 @ 21:17:05

    Well done for persevering – BB is indeed beautiful!


  3. Pants With Names
    Apr 13, 2011 @ 21:35:53

    I was so shocked to see that the figure was 3%, it really shook me. I thought that the figure would be far higher than that.

    So pleased that you perservered, so pleased that you found that perserverence worth it. And thanks for the comment at mine – I was wondering if anyone else would be posting about the TV prog today!


  4. Heidi
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 08:30:15

    3%? Really? I’ve always felt proud of breastfeeding Dylan til 18 months, it’s right up there with giving birth on my lifetime achievements.

    We were closet BFers for the last few months though, not out of embarrassment but because I could only feed him when he was half asleep otherwise he found it hilarious to watch my reaction when he dug his razor-sharp teeth in! Ouch, it still make me squirm when I remember the pain!

    Keep going for as long as you and BB want I say, sod society.

    Missed the programme, was it BBC? Wonder if its on iPlayer.

    Best of luck for Sunday xxx


  5. Cake and Tea Blog
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 14:24:46

    Oh, well done! I’m still feeding my 12 month old and can testify that big boobs that have succumbed to gravity don’t make for easy and discreet feeding. Especially with a nosey baby who likes to have a good look around mid-feed, regardless of exposed boob issues!


  6. GlitterUnicorn
    Apr 14, 2011 @ 21:12:45

    Still feeding my boy after 14 months. I’m a closet feeder too, morning, naps and bed time only. Never in public anymore. I think lots more (than 3%) are extreme BF’s but don’t admit it. I plan to continue until he’s ready to self wean…..hopefully before school!


  7. Isil
    Apr 15, 2011 @ 20:21:06

    I am tandem feeding my 4 year old and my 16 month old. I want them to self-wean when they feel ready.
    My daughter goes to preschool since 2.5 y.o and her teachers always tell me how independent she is. Breast is best 🙂


  8. Trackback: A mum shares her breastfeeding experience | The Real Supermum Blog
  9. Circus Queen
    Apr 19, 2011 @ 11:00:24

    Very encouraging post! Not even kidding, my mother asked me what problems women encounter when breastfeeding. It turns out that for her, like pregnancy, it was a breeze. She couldn’t understand why I was worried and seemed to wonder if hearing other people’s horror stories might ‘create’ problems for me. I explained to her that while I fully hope to breastfeed, I’m just not being naive about the potential for problems. Awareness helps, I think. If I went into it assuming it’ll all be jolly from the start, I might be more likely to give up sooner rather than later if I did run into problems.


  10. Dr Sarah
    Jun 20, 2011 @ 21:35:36

    So glad to hear it’s working well for you, but just wanted to get pedantic and make one correction: *Exclusive* breastfeeding refers to feeding a child *solely* on breastmilk, with no solids, formula, or anything else other than medicine or vitamin supplements. (Definitions differ slightly on whether water is counted in the definition, but other foods and drinks are definitely out.) So I suspect you meant that you’re breastfeeding, not that you’re exclusively breastfeeding (unless you really haven’t started solids yet, in which case I’d have to question the wisdom of that action – as good as breastmilk is, babies do start needing some other nutrients as time goes by!) Either way, well done for making it work and for keeping going!


  11. Trackback: Norma Stitz, the worlds’ largest natural breasts’ owner, confesses on UK TV that a magnificent bosom can cause a lot of suffering | iToD Daily Newspaper

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