Tuesday, August 26, 2014

// a d v e n t u r e s i n b r e a s t f e e d i n g - a l l i ' s s t o r y //

I'm sharing Alli's story today.  I love hearing about how she overcame obstacles.  Her supportive and encouraging words are exactly why I love posting these stories.  I hope you all feel as encouraged and inspired as I do when reading these stories.  Thank you, Alli!  <3 <3

The minute I got pregnant I knew I wanted to breastfeed. I don't exactly know why I felt so strongly about it, as none of the women in my family had breastfed and I had never really been around anyone who did. But regardless I threw myself into researching every aspect. I took classes, read books, found forums and helpful mamas online. After 40 weeks and 1 day of pregnancy my little girl was finally earthside and we were ready to begin our journey together. Less than an hour after birth, Naomi nursed for the first time and over the next couple days I quickly realized this wasn't going to be as easy as i had thought. Latching problems, cracked nipples, mastitis, engorgement, lip-tie, we had our fair share of problems over the first month (you know, the things no one tells you about). Luckily I had developed a great support system and still felt very strongly about continuing to nurse my baby. So through every feeding things got a little easier, a little less painful, I wasn't curling my toes in pain anymore. 

Next step, nursing in public. I live in a small midwest city, you know, the "nurse in the bathroom", "cover yourself up!" "nursing in public is like urinating in public" kind of place. So naturally, I was scared. Slowly but surely I worked up the courage to do it, and man am I glad I did. No more staying home all day, or planning outings around when she needed to eat! I felt free! I also learned that by nursing in public and talking about breastfeeding openly, I was giving other moms the encouragement and support they needed to decide to nurse their babies! Over the next 27 months Naomi and I developed a bond that will connect us forever, and although I am sad that she weaned i am so proud of our accomplishment. Proud that I stuck with it, proud that I helped to normalize breastfeeding to those around me, proud that i was able to be the support for new moms that were starting their own journeys, proud that my body was able to nourish and grow a smart, loving, funny, & beautiful toddler. A toddler that will grow up knowing and realizing breastfeeding is an amazing, natural, part of life & wont be ashamed or embarrassed of her body and the incredible things it does. I now hope to continue to be a support system for other mamas when they need it most. When everyone else around them is saying "Give up" I want to be the one who says "Keep going. You are strong. You can do this." Because for me, that was exactly what I needed.

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