I hadn’t actually planned to write anything for world breastfeeding week. It feels like it’s all been said before. Everyone gets a bit touchy about where they sit on the breastfeeding continuum. Maybe you are mum who found it easy and can’t understand why the stats are so low. Maybe the thought of breastfeeding repels you.
More likely, you’re one of the mums who falls somewhere in the middle but whose voice gets drowned out by the extremes. There are those who gave it a go but for whatever reason didn’t continue. And those who stand by the ‘fed is best’ mantra and are just happy to see their baby thriving whether fed by boob or bottle.
But it’s Twins
Personally, I absolutely wanted to breastfeed but always knew I had an easier out than most if it got too much. Breastfeeding twins is not exactly something you see everyday and although loads of multiple mummies do so successfully, they are seen as some sort of breastfeeding ninjas rather than as the norm.Although loads of multiple mummies nurse successfully, they are seen as some sort of breastfeeding ninjas rather than as the norm. Click To Tweet
After almost three months of grit and determination, I managed to get into the swing of it and finally got to a point where it was actually enjoyable. Nevertheless, even with the most amazing support, I never quite managed to exclusively feed my pair. It still niggles me but I know I did my best.
Get to the Point
My breastfeeding rambling do have a point…This week my Emily was under investigation for an irregular heart rhythm. It’s been more than three years since she had open heart surgery to patch the hole in her heart so this new concern has shaken me.
The unknown is bringing back all sorts of memories. It’s reminding me of how tiny she was. Born at only 4lb 4oz she found nursing so hard. The day she had surgery was probably the hardest day of my life. I knew she was in the best possible hands but yet I felt so useless and terrified.
It was all worth it
When we were finally allowed to see her, she peered up from the tangle of wires and monitors and smiled. I knew she was OK but I desperately wanted to hold her. The following day one of the specialist cardiac nurses helped put her into my arms for a feed. As soon as she latched on, I knew instantly that every second of my breastfeeding journey had been worth it.
Her big blue eyes stared up at me as happy tears ran down my face. It’s a moment I’ll never forget and one I feel privileged to have been able to experience. In some tiny way, I felt I was helping or at the very least comforting my girl in a way no one else could. It was one of those life affirming moments.
What it means to me
I truly just wanted to share what breastfeeding means to me and this special breastfeeding moment. I really do know how tough it can be and I know I was incredibly fortunate to have amazing support.
There is clearly a huge gap between the almost preachy recommendations before baby arrives and the actual practical hands on support available when baby is here. Until this is rectified, it really doesn’t surprise me that the number of breastfeeding mums is falling.
Did you get the support you needed?