My journey started in 2011 with my first daughter Savannah. When I was pregnant I was determined to breastfeed and was confident I would be able too. After Savannahs birth, she wouldn’t latch, I was still in shock, although it wasn’t a bad experience it wasn’t ideal. I had the midwife who delivered her try and help but she wouldn’t latch on. Once I was moved to the post labour ward and my partner was sent home I finally got her to attach. I then had to buzz the midwife each time I went to feed. I fumbled my way through with no real help or acknowledgment that I was actually doing it alright. We kept going and she was feeding well. We left at midnight the next day. Once home I was in agony and my nipples were cracked. I dreaded each feed. Then each feed my legs would feel so restless, like I had to keep moving them, I felt hot and cold, and I had this overwhelming urge to push the baby off me. This went on for another day and a half. Then it just went, along with the pain. My milk came in and we were off and feeding easily. She fed 2 hourly until 8pm and then she cluster fed until 10pm and slept until morning. I had to go back to work when she was 5 months. I tried to pump but just couldn’t get enough. She was coming with me but when I asked about feeding breaks I was told I could feed only tea breaks and lunch breaks. I have since found out I was entitled to feeding breaks. Trying to feed her around when I could take breaks took its toll on my supply, and then she started solids do was a lot more interested in food. By 8 months the biting started. It was hard but I pushed through, but feeds were stressful, I was waiting for her to bite me and she was struggling with my lack of supply. Then one night before bed at 10.5 months she wouldn’t feed. The next few days she wouldn’t feed. I was so tired and stressed from work that I accepted her weaning. It wasn’t until later I wished I’d fought harder to protect our feeding relationship.
Jade’s Breastfeeding Journey
September this year we welcomed our second daughter Caitlin. After a very different birth I was excited to let her try the booby crawl. But she wouldn’t latch, she was frustrated and I was getting stressed. I sat up and tried to latch her. After 1 hour I finally got her to feed. Each feed after that got easier. We left after 8 hours and went home. Caitlin was only 2.6kg so the paediatricians were slightly concerned letting us go home. As the first day progressed the pain set in like last time. By that night the same restless legs, hot and cold feelings and the urge to get the baby the hell off me came back. It was so hard, and Caitlin didn’t like to go to sleep on her own or stay in her bassinet so I slept with her in the crock of my arm for the first few days. Day 2 ended with my milk coming in and the pain and feelings eased. We have been going great guns since. I have a lot of milk and Caitlin loves the breast, for milk and comfort. So although my 2 feeding experiences have been very similar, they are extremely different too.