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I couldn’t let this week pass by without writing about my breastfeeding journey. I am blessed to have been able to breastfeed Leo for the last 21 months, but my initial goal was only 6 weeks.
Before I get into my journey I want to include that I know that sometimes breastfeeding just doesn’t work out. For the mom who tried but their supply never came — you are still amazing. And to the mom who exclusively pumped, yet feels like she didn’t breastfeed, you did and you rocked it. If you fed your baby – you succeeded. You are a good mom.
Before I birthed Leo I knew that I wanted to try to breastfeed. I knew it would be a huge help financially and that it has so many added benefits nutritionally, but I wasn’t dead set on it. I knew there was a chance it might not work out and I was totally ok with that. Honestly, I almost gave up before I even started.
The beginning was HARD. We both had to figure out latch, I had to wake up and feed him around the clock, and thats not even mentioning cluster feeding. Once we established supply and found our routine, it was and still is HARD to have the constant touching. A lot of times I feel touched out, but I love that we have the bond that we do.
As I mentioned before my initial goal was 6 weeks. That turned into 6 months, which turned into a year, that turned into 18 months, and now we are at 2 years. I dread weaning process, but I’m ready.
One of the biggest reasons I feel like I found success on my journey was all of the support I received from my family and friends. It makes such a difference when you are being encouraged and motivated by those closest to you – so if there is a new mom in your life who is just starting this journey please reach out and encourage them!
Breastfeeding can be a wonderful journey, and there are definitely some products out there that can help make it more manageable. Below are links (click on the product name) to my favorite products and a description/my review of each. I highly recommend adding these to your baby registry if you are considering trying to breastfeed!
Haakaa Manual Breast Pump: I only used my electric pump a handful of times at the N N beginning, so I loved using this to collect milk from the other side to build a small freezer supply.
Haakaa Ladybuyg Silicone Milk Collector – These are great for catching let down, but not a pump.
Breastmilk Storage Bags – I liked how easy it was to fill these up and store!
Nipple Shields – these were a necessity for the first few weeks!
Nipple Cream – I really only used this for the first few months, but it was so needed. I also was prescribed a nipple cream from my midwife so if you are having any issues, make sure that you let them know!
Nursing Bras – I really liked these at the beginning. Now I use some from target that are more like a sports bra!
Leaky Momma Lactation Cookies – by far my favorite supplies were these lactation cookies! This is a local mom in the Lexington area who bakes and sells the BEST lactation cookies. There are a variety of flavors and they are all equally as delicious. I was gifted these when I can home from the hospital by my dear friend Marissa and I continued to purchase and eat these (selfless, I know) while I was establishing my supply! They are also a great gift for a new mom, and a great way to support local. However, if you are not in the area I found a great recipe online or you can find different brands in store!
If you are interested in hearing more about my journey or would like more recommendations, please reach out! I would love to help and support you in anyway that I can!
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