Everything changes when you become a parent. I never thought I’d give birth without medication, twice. I never thought I’d even consider homeschooling. And I never thought in my right mind I’d breastfeed two kids until the age of 3 for a total of 6 years!
Man, if my boobs could talk, the breastfeeding stories they would tell. I mean everything from breaking the law to nurse my crying baby, to my first time breastfeeding in public, to pulling over on the side of the freeway for a feeding, then having my dad drive us home, while my mom followed behind. And I can’t forget how hard it was breastfeeding a sick baby. My goodness, my kids didn’t want anything else but the boob!
And, I was okay with that.
Why I Loved Breastfeeding
Stepping into motherhood was so enchanting. From embracing your little babe, watching their every move, and even feeding them with your bodily fluids. Somehow it’s all so magical. I don’t care what anyone says, including my family who thought I was cray, but I loved breastfeeding because…
It gave me time to bond with my babies. I was able to provide them with something no one else could…their mama’s milk! I feel blessed that I was able to bond with them a little longer in this way. Even on the craziest of days, lying down to feed my babies was one of my favorite ways to spend time with them. Can I tell you a little secret? Sometimes, I miss it!
It was convenient and affordable. We never had to buy formula and if my babies were hungry all I had to do was give them the boob! We also never had to wake up in the middle of the night to warm up a bottle. On the flip side, I never really had a good night’s sleep. But, that gave me a good excuse to sleep in.
Here’s a photo of my little guy breastfeeding at the Mom’s Meet Wow Summit.
It was the best food for my babies. I truly believe that breast milk is the best thing we can give our babies as they mature into little toddlers. Because they steal a lot of nutrients from us through our breast milk we have to constantly replenish our bodies. Breastfeeding was a great excuse to keep eating what you wanted! Like that double cheeseburger with bacon, a side of garlic fries and a chocolate peanut butter milk shake! Yeah, I was still eating for two you know.
There are so many reasons I loved breastfeeding. These are my top three.
On a side note, I respect that breastfeeding is a choice, also for others it becomes impossible. I would never knock another mom for not breastfeeding. Everyone has their preferences and their reasons for breastfeeding or not.
If you are able to breastfeed though, I say give it a try.
Putting My Breasts to Rest
I never thought the day would come when my son would stop breastfeeding. It was a bitter sweet moment, but not at all how I had planned for it to happen. After getting sick and being prescribed antibiotics it was suggested that I didn’t breastfeed while on them. This made me sad. I would have to wean my baby unexpectedly.
Even though I was getting ready to wean my son, I still wasn’t quite ready for what was about to happen.
I remember the day my daughter stopped breastfeeding like it was yesterday. I remember what she was wearing and where we were sitting. I wanted that for my son too. Honestly, I can’t remember the last time I nursed my son.
When I came home from the hospital I had to tell my son that mommy’s chi chi (that’s what we call them) milk was bad so he couldn’t have any. It was heartbreaking to deny him of the one thing he loved. After 10 days I thought he’d be back on, but he never was. He was over them. Well, sort of.
Weird Weaning Habits
Even though he wasn’t interested in nursing, he was still having withdrawals. He kept saying that my chi chi was yuck, but he’d still go in and take a whiff saying, “mmm, your chi chi smell good,”or he’d pinch them and say “they’re so squishy!” Both of my kids also said, “I just want to hold it!” It’s been three months and he is still doing this. Not sure if this is a boy thing, or just part of the weaning process.
Breastfeeding was quite a journey. One I will never forget. Many things have changed already since I’ve stopped nursing, but one thing remains the same…both kids are still super attached!
After three months without breastfeeding, I will admit I am a little relieved that my breasts can now rest!
Now that I’m not breastfeeding…
- I can wear a top without first wondering how I’ll get my kid’s head to my breast
- I can drink however much I want, wine that is
- My hair is finally back to normal, almost
- My kid is finally sleeping through the night
- My husband has a chance to bond with the kids more
- I’ve tossed my nursing bras!
Breast Cancer Awareness
Since we’re already on the topic of breasts, did you know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month?
According to the National Breast Cancer website, “Breast cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death among women, and each year it’s estimated that over 246,660 women in the United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer.” That’s pretty scary.
However, BreastCancer.org tells us that, moms who breastfeed longer than a year have a better chance of dodging the beast. That’s a huge reason to keep breastfeeding!
Although breast cancer has not surfaced in my immediate family, it has affected the lives of many women on my husband’s side…which makes me worry for my daughter. I don’t believe it’s hereditary in nature (don’t quote me on that), but it’s still something I will always wonder as she gets older.
My daughter’s only 6 but here are a few things I’ll be teaching her as her little boobies start to develop. These are still things my mom reminds me of today.
- Find a doctor you love and get regular check-ups.
- Become familiar with your boobies and her body.
- Learn to self-examine yourself.
- If you feel something different or unusual, get it checked. Better to be safe, than sorry.
- Get that mammogram when you reach the big 4-0! Ain’t no shame, okay.
- And of course, tell mommy everything.
After I stopped breast feeding I felt something different about my boobs while I was taking shower. It was pretty obvious to me. I even asked my husband to check just in case I was hallucinating. Low and behold there was something that wasn’t there before. At first I brushed it off thinking it’s probably just dried up milk. A couple weeks later I decided to get breast exam just to make sure.
Thank goodness it was gone and the doctor said it probably did have something to do with the fact I had recently stopped breastfeeding. I know others aren’t always as fortunate, but to say I was relieved was an understatement. I needed to go and know for sure I was okay, not just for me, but for my family.
Our breasts are a force to be reckoned with. As women we are powerful, strong and emotional beings. It amazes me how much pain we can handle, but also how much life we give to our loved ones. I hope your breastfeeding journey is or has been a memorable one.
Sending thoughts and prayers to all those who are and have been affected by breast cancer, and hoping that you as well as your closest girlfriends, your mothers, your sisters, your spouses may never have to experience it.
Please share your breastfeeding or breast cancer stories in the comments below. We’d love to hear them.