Breastfeeding: The stuff they don't tell you

Once again TMM are bring the raw & real motherhood stories of real Mamas. And today we hear from TMM Mama Faith who shares her hard truth about her breastfeeding journey.

I was incredibly naive when it came to having children, & to our feeding journeys. I’m Faith and I have three children. Sophia 9, Darcy 8 and Sonny 6 months.I had my first daughter at 21 and was so innocent when it came to feeding. I always said I would try and breastfeed, but when I went to breastfeed her after she was born I had absolutely no idea how too?

We’re told it’s natural, biological, just put baby to breast. But I had no clue and no one taught me. I can remember I asked a midwife for help in the hospital, she squeezed my boob and shoved Sophia on and walked out. Sophia came off and from then on I gave up within 24 hours and formula fed.

I was vulnerable, exhausted and felt like no one had the time to help me.

With my second daughter Darcy I told myself, well what’s the point? I had no support the first time. It’ll be the same struggles again. I’m not putting myself through this.

They were always so pushy in my midwife appointments to breastfeed the girls so this didn’t make sense the lack of help after? Maybe there was something wrong with me, my boobs, my body? Both my girls actually had a CMPA and were on prescribed milk from the doctor. Years later, a lot of education and a third time lucky right? I went in absolutely determined. Armed with a breastfeeding online course with Mindful Breastfeeding Coach Laura, education on feeding my baby, stats, a tribe around me. & I had a strong why.

Knowing my girls also had a CMPA I also assumed Sonny would too. Being vegan it made sense I fed him too rather than battle with health professionals over formula. We HAD to do this, this time. Mindset wise I was a strong ‘breastfeed my baby or nothing vibe’ (Taurus gal)Now. Let me tell you.. the grit. The trenches. The determination like no other. It’s not easy mamma regardless of what anyone tells you. Categorically the second hardest thing I’ve ever had to do was those first two weeks of feeding. But please know when you’re through.. Oh wow. When you’re through It’s absolutely magical.

A bond I have never experienced before. The hormone rush of love for my baby. My body has grown his body. What an achievement. We faced many battles to get here, I think perhaps more than others, which constantly highlighted to Matt and I why so many women give up with breastfeeding their babies.

We faced strong tongue tie, foods that would trigger Sonny’s tummy and make him scream in pain. We would have to keep food diaries. I had bleeding and cracked nipples, peeling nipples.

Toe curling feeds every two hours for two weeks. A side preference and engorged boob. Cranial osteopath appointments.

Feeling so incredibly touched out. All. The. Time. & yet always needed by someone. I actually invested in a breastfeeding consultant to come to my home and actually show me how I feed my baby. (Best investment ever).

 But you know what? All of those battles. We got through. Me & my baby did it. Six months on we’re still feeding. & I’m so proud of us. 

They say it’s the most natural thing breastfeeding. It’s embodied in us, mothers and babies instinct. Yet it absolutely wasn’t for us. & I genuinely think that’s the same for so many women? It's sad to read that 90% of women from the UK stop breastfeeding before they want to.

So here I am flying the flag mamma for you. Highlighting how challenging it can be. I hope you feel heard. Me too. Whatever battles you faced too or however far you got. 

Whether it be 24 hours like me. Or 9 months and beyond also like me. & how you fed your first, second, third baby doesn’t have to be the way you feed your next. Rewrite your story.

Loved Faith's story? You can shop her edit here and use the code FAITH15 for discount 

p.s don't forget you got this mama!

Love Sophia x