We were thrown a huge curve ball with my first son having bad infant reflux his entire first year. I had such a hard time, I didn’t even give breastfeeding a thought with our second son. Then came our third son. I had a fabulous nurse who was really encouraging me to breastfeed. I was curious and seriously thinking about it. I still wasn’t sure. What if he had reflux like my first two? Would it be worth it? Well I ended up trying it when my son was 4-5 days old. I had very little knowledge and was unprepared. My milk had already been in for two days and I was very engorged. He had already had a bottle for 5 days. He actually did latch on well but would get frustrated. I bought a breast pump and tried pumping to keep my supply from diminishing. It was a long 2 month battle of trying everything to get to increase my supply enough for him. In the process I ended getting bronchitis and pneumonia. I was also diagnosed with an auto immune disease and post partum. I had to let go and stop breastfeeding.
Then game my fourth little guy. I was ready and prepared. He was born almost 4 weeks early. He latched on well but got tired way to fast. It effected his breathing, blood sugar, and of course weight gain. I continued to pump breast milk and give what I got to him with a bottle. For the first 2 months I could give him mainly breastmilk. I didn’t have a large supply like some mothers do but he ate such a small amount it was working. Unfortunately in the meantime he was also diagnosed with GERD (Infant Reflux) and a milk protein allergy. UGH!!! I tried to eliminate everything I could and he still had trouble so we had to go to a prescription only formula.
I was so disappointed. I know I did my best and he did get breast milk for 2 months. But I still felt very depressed that it didn’t workout the way I had hoped. It felt like a loss or a feeling of failure. Why couldn’t I be like some of those moms how had an instant over supply? Or like a mother who’s baby was completely healthy and could breastfeed for as long as they wanted to do so?
I never thought in a million years I would ever say I missed it. When I see a mother who is breastfeeding her child, hear a newborn crying, or hear how a mother was able to breastfeed successfully for 6 months to a year, I get that feeling. It’s crazy how are bodies are so programmed with that motherly instinct. Sometimes when I’m holding my littlest one, now 8 months old, I get the longing to be able to give him what only a mother could. And that my fellow mamas is Breastfeeding Envy…