The good, the bad, and the leaking.
Oh, sure you may think you know all there is to know about breastfeeding.
I mean, it’s basically lift shirt, apply baby, and watch said baby grow like one of those Chia Pets that weren’t supposed to be cool yet I always secretly wanted, right?
But I bet there’s a lot you don’t know about the art of breastfeeding, including (but not limited to) these little-known stages of the season of life commonly known as: Nursing a Baby.
1. The stress of making a decision about breastfeeding.
Obviously, the first stage of any breastfeeding journey happens when deciding whether or not to breastfeed. But I mean, it’s hardly a decision — it’s a no brainer right? Breast is best! Wait, except not always, but you know what I mean. Breast is best unless it’s not and that makes total sense. So, um, should you breastfeed? Show of hands, anyone?
2. The hopeful optimism that breastfeeding will be “natural” for your baby.
Yep, you’re totally going to end up with one of those babies who chomps like a champ. This is going to be easy-peasy.
3. When #2 quickly fades away and a lactation consultant wiggles your boob in an attempt to persuade your baby to eat, and you feel like a shred of your former self.
Are you achin’? For some bacon? Well duh, if your milk tasted like bacon maybe the little stinker would eat it, hmmpphh.
4. The shock when you have to sign your life away.
You may not be aware of it at the time, but deciding to breastfeed is actually equivalent to signing the next however many months of your life away as a person who can’t wear normal shirts, leave the house for more than two hours without a mechanical pump, or sleep without possibly waking up in a puddle of milk. Please sign on the dotted line.
5. The rage you have to hide when your husband tries to tell you the baby is hungry even though you just fed her 10 seconds ago.
Stay calm, stay calm, stay calm.
6. When the baby is crying inconsolably and you come to the rescue with your boobs.
Sometimes, those little milk makers are like magic. Fine, I’ll admit it.
7. The moment you feel like you can’t possibly. Feed. The. Baby. Another. Minute.
Seriously, it’s impossible. I have literally nothing left to give.
8. How freaking amazing you feel when you are nursing a baby, changing a diaper, making a phone call, and cooking dinner all the same time.
Multitasking momma FTW.
9. When you realize that pregnancy cravings ain’t got nothing on breastfeeding cravings.
Honestly, I don’t understand why people even waste time talking about pregnancy cravings when breastfeeding made me want to eat an entire freezer full of beef by myself. I actually cried tears of joy when my husband cooked me a steak the night I came home from the hospital. I still dream about how delicious that steak was and how weird it was that my husband was appalled at how I moaned in pleasure while eating it.
10. Thinking about how much money you’ve saved by breastfeeding makes you feel a little bit like this:
Now if someone could explain why I don’t seem to be seeing any of that money I’ve saved, that would be great.
11. When you upgrade to a real bra that you know won’t get stretched out or stained with milk and are feeling fancy.
Is that lace? Why yes, yes it is. And I’m not even wearing a nursing pad, because I like to live on the wild side.
12. The day you realize you can choose a shirt that doesn’t require immediate, full-frontal access.
Wait, what? You mean I CAN WEAR WHATEVER I WANT AND MY BOOBS CAN STAY IN MY BRA ALL DAY?? I don’t know how to process this information.
13. The irresistible pull of solidarity you will feel when you see a fellow mother struggling to nurse in public.
It’s basically the circle of life, and it’s a beautiful, beautiful thing.