When Breast Isn’t Best
I looked down and there she was, looking back up at me, all pink and wrinkly, with a shot of red hair. I was exhausted and wanted to sleep, wanted to throw up too, that was the epidural wearing off. It was a long labour, but happy doesn’t describe how I felt in that moment… ecstatic, elated and euphoric come close .
I always saw myself as a mother nature type, a bit hippy dippy at times , I loved children and couldn’t wait to have my own. Here I was staring at my very own bundle. (I still felt like throwing up, tho) The midwife asked if I would like to try a feed? No sooner had she the words, out of her mouth, I had my boob out, ready to crack on with it. Nutrition for children is what I’m about, and I have already hooked up with a “breastfeeding buddy” in my area, So I’ve got this in the bag…
Babs was attached to me for 3 days and nights solid, every time I’d look at her, she would look back, with a sucking motion. (I was starting to feel like a milk machine )
The midwife kept checking if “baby” had her first wet nappy, (She hadn’t) She also passed a light-hearted comment that my “boobies were a bit droopy” (oh how I laughed) and showed me a trick, how to breastfeed with droopy boobs, so I soldiered on, babs under my arm feeding from my saddlebags. After the 3rd day the doctor explained to me that they will have to do a blood test and kidney scan, as baby hasn’t urinated yet …. Frightened .. this scared the living daylights out of me. The doctor then asked,” how would mother feel if we tried her with a bottle?” (delighted, relieved, em YESSS) “well only if it works”, I replied.
The bottle was produced and the little maggot drained it like a builder drinking a pint, on a hot day.
We waited… and it happened .. the first wee.. “ the gush went on forever” like a pee stop on a bus to slane in the 90,s .. I thought it wasn’t going to stop. We cheered, I cried .. tears of joy, then tears of guilt… then just tears and tears and tears. The floodgates had opened.
Why couldn’t I do it? The most natural thing in the world… Why couldn’t I breastfeed
Months passed and my girly thrived, I continued to bottle feed, and as soon as she was ready for solids, I turned it up a notch. This is my bag, and that’s, where my food and parenting blog was born, “one yummy mummy” .. now I can make up for being a lousy droopy-boobed breastfeeder.
All the milestones were hit, she even started to walk at 10 months and with that developed a love for climbing. I noticed after a minor fall ,that her top lip was very tight to her gum, I went to a specialist because it was niggling at me. The specialist confirmed that it was “lip tie and tongue tie” which wasn’t really noticeable from the outside but fairly prominent on the inside… she said it could be fixed with a laser treatment and went on to ask “was she breastfeed?” … (here we go again) eh… no, I tried , but I couldn’t… it just em… she cut me off and said, “ because of the lip and tongue tie , she would have never been able to latch on”…
WHAT? Seriously? So it wasn’t my droopy jugs after all!
Breastfed, bottle fed, spoon fed, or baby led… What’s best, Is What works for you and your baby… Enough said…
By Jolene Cox
Originally published at oneyummymummy.com on September 1, 2016.