Breastfeeding! Let’s rewind back to 2013 when I was just about to give birth to the love of my life my first born king, my Anwar. As any mum to be would I spent most of my time reading and reading and reading absolutely anything and everything to do with parenting and motherhood and one of the most common things I came across was breastfeeding and breast is best, of course I wanted to do everything and anything to give my baby the best start in life and if it means to be milked like a cow a 100 times a day then so be it. I made the decision I was going to exclusively breastfeed if I was able to.
04.04.14, my amazing baby arrived into this world, I held him in my arm and everything was perfect, he latched on perfectly and I felt like I’ve been breastfeeding for years, I loved it and it created an amazing bond.
Fast forward a year and a half this love for breastfeeding had a crazy turn. It all started to get to me! I realised time was up, through out that year and half I hardly left him, he was never keen on a bottle (I tried every bloody brand) tried dummies, tried everything, and all he would take was mamma’s milk directly from mama.
I loved it at the start because only I could give him the most important thing. I knew he knew I was the nurturer, it was lovely but not when I was used as a human dummy, during day and night (if you breastfeed you know its easier when they’re in bed with you and you just pop it out and go back to bed lol) I wanted my body back, I felt like I was owned by this baby turning toddler.
It became constant and annoying he would not go to sleep without it no matter how tired he was! the more persistent he got the more I hated it, honestly I cried so many times and I hated myself for it, I felt so guilty that I hated giving my baby something he really wanted, my emotions and anger at the situation was peaking! I didn’t know how to stop and I was so hurt by the judgments I received for wanting to stop making me feel like I was a bad mum.
The only two that supported my decision were the hubby and my mum, bless my dear old mum she helped me and reassured me i’m not a bad mum for wanting to stop hes had his 18-19 months of being exclusively breastfed so it’s OK to stop, she used to say.
One night at 20 months old, after more than 30 minutes of breastfeeding him to sleep, I thought….. I’m done! that’s it this is his last feed. I stuck to it, it was bed time, I refused to give him the ” Mummy Mili” as he would call it. It was hard and horrible, and he cried his poor heart out but I was done, I was miserable and I knew that it wasn’t good for him, and then I read somewhere on netmums to rub marmite on your nipples & offer it to them hahaha so I ran downstairs and did that well let me tell you something, he had a taste, had the most disgusted look on his face, and he pushed it away, he actually pushed it away, I couldn’t believe it, and he layed his head on my chest and slept within 5 minutes no lie – what the hell was all the fuss about!! I couldn’t believe.
What happened next?
Fast forward 2016, about to have my second King Ilyas, I knew breastfeeding was going to be a big issue for me! If you notice there wasn’t that much of space between stopping breastfeeding Anwar to now almost giving birth again, so the idea of going through that again was like a horror movie for me!
I decided (because I once enjoyed it, and I believe of it’s benefits) that I would combine feed.
Well let’s not get into the disgusting comments I received from family and even midwifes, I couldn’t believe the midwifes though to be honest – Where is the professionalism ? wait, is that even a word or did I just make it up? well, you you get what I’m trying to say anyway, I felt sorry for the mamma’s who choose to formula feed or the ones who simply can not breastfeed . Of course there was the two lovely midwifes at delivery who supported me and gave me honest advice rather than criticize my decisions.
I stuck to a routine, I would breastfeed mostly during the day and mornings and formula feed during the night and when we were out. I felt happy, it was the balance I needed, and I got to spend time with my big boy whilst my sister, mum or hubby wanted to feed Ilyas. I loved it!
I was never angry or frustrated when feeding, I didn’t hate it, or felt controlled, it was the perfect balance for me, and praise be to God he like his brother he is a strong and healthy little munchkin.
My advice and what I learnt would be… NEVER, EVER, be bullied into Formula Feeding or Breast Feeding, NEVER be made to feel like you’re a bad mum, NEVER allow anyone family, midwifes, partner, anyone dictate how and what you should do with your baby – I know its easier said than done but believe me, toughen up & stand your grounds.
Do what’s best for you and your baby, Breastfeed if you want to, Formula fed if you want to , do both if you want to…. You are the mum! and know your baby loves you either way.
What was your experience? How was your feeding journey? Share below it could be support for fellow mamas.