Since I will be on house arrest this week — Elon and I had the fever — I would like to write about some things that I have been meaning to write about for so long now. For a while, I have been thinking how to share my breastfeeding journey. I have a draft of a timeline. I have another with all the terms that I learned about it. But last night, as I breastfeed Elon for the nth time, I have decided that I am going to share how breastfeeding is the most beautiful thing a mother can give and a child can take and the pain that came along with it.
As a disclaimer, I would like to point out that I am not shaming or judging mothers who don’t breastfeed because we have different circumstances in life. Some really can’t, even when they wanted to.
I am Elon’s source of food. I am his one and only. From his first day, he was latching on to me. When he first did, I was playing the song “Now I’ve got you in my space, I won’t let go of you.. Got you shackled in my embrace. I’m latching on to you” in my head. It was a beautiful thing.
I thought that Disclosure song was so on point in describing how breastfeeding was.. Until it hurt like a female dog. At first it was really beautiful, so beautiful I would want to wake sleeping Elon up from his sleep but it changed to I didn’t want Elon to cry out for food. The song in my head suddenly became the intro to Beethoven’s 5th symphony “dun dun dun dunnnnn..”
Oh boy was breastfeeding a taxing thing to do. Elon and I try to be in sync with his latch on and me trying to insert my boob into his teeny tiny mouth. It was exhausting and frustrating. But the thing that makes the background music go dun dun dun dun was the pain. The pain it caused the first few weeks made me question why did I have a baby. Yes it does not sound good to hear but I had these questions when I felt the pain. I guess I was not strong of a woman enough. I questioned what have I gotten myself into when I could have been out and enjoying other things except from breastfeeding. It was evil. And I feel guilty every time I remember those moments of weakness.
Breastfeeding became emotionally and physically draining for me. Even straightening my back hurt my boob. Imagine that tiny stretch of my back hurt my boob. I felt wounded — literally and metaphorically. There were even times that even showering hurt. I had to turn my back on so the water would not hurt me. Every time I nurse, I asked God for forgiveness for the bad thoughts I was thinking. I also asked him for strength cause I know the pain would soon be over once Elon and I established the correct latch. I knew like in the Bible that “this [pain of nursing] too shall pass”. And it did. It took a month before I felt pain free. But I still had issues after.
There was the issue of leaking cause I had too much milk. I was out one time and I felt cold although I was wearing my winter jacket. And when I checked, my winter jacket was wet from the inside because of my milk.
There was the issue of oversupply. Sometimes Elon would scream at my boobs because there was too much milk. He does not know how to handle it that he sometimes drown in it and chokes.
There was the issue of unequal amount of milk production of my boobs because Elon had favored the right than the left.
Then there was the issue of engorgement when the milk finally started coming in but it was not being emptied out quick enough.
Then there was the issue of going out and not nursing Elon but using the bottle instead. Elon hates the bottle and my boobs gets too full when Elon does not empty it out.
Some of these issues, I still battle out until now that Elon is almost three months. But I have come to terms that breastfeeding is the best and most enjoyable moment of motherhood. This morning while I was breastfeeding Elon, he was looking straight to my eye and occasionally stopping to coo at me and smile while he eats. He started doing it when he was a month and a half. I have been looking forward for when I would nurse Elon now. Sometimes, when he plays for too long or sleeps for too long, I just want to grab him and feed him instead so I can hold him and look at him while he eats.
Breastfeeding has become that beautiful thing where Elon and I bond and where I can freely hug and hold him to my heart’s content (Without him being fussy and all). I am so glad I did not give up on breastfeeding when it became painful.
To all the moms struggling right now, YOU CAN DO IT! It will get better!
And now the song in my head has been back to “I wont let go of you.. I’m latching on to you..”