I’d always known I wanted to breastfeed, I loved the idea of the closeness and bond I would share with my baby so when my daughter was born in October last year it was a no brainer.
My active labour was 26 hours and I was expecting to have skin to skin straight away and to feed my baby. Due to complications during labour she had to be taken away 20 minutes after delivery to have a cannula inserted into her hand so she could be given antibiotics. It was the longest 1.5 hours of my life!
By the time she came back, I’d been stitched up and she had woken she had already been earthside for 7 hours. I asked a Midwife to help me feed as I have inverted nipples so new it may be more difficult and I didn’t have a clue what to do. The Midwife pulled and fiddled with my breast until there was something for my daughter to try and latch onto but she really struggled and the pain was pretty intense because she couldn’t latch properly. I cried with the pain (and the exhaustion!) and the Midwife told me I was going to struggle so maybe give her some formula. The help ended there.
We gave my daughter the colostrum the midwife manually expressed from me (which was a little humiliating even after giving birth!) from a syringe which she took but I already felt like a failure 7 hours into motherhood.
3 days after my daughter was born we were waiting to be discharged when a different Midwife came round to organise my discharge papers. She asked how I was feeding and I explained to her that I wanted to nurse but why I couldn’t so baby was on formula. She went away and came back with a nipple shield for us to try. It took 10 minutes and my daughter was breastfeeding! This Midwife took an hour out of her busy schedule to teach me how to feed my baby. I cried tears of joy that this simple tool could allow me to feed my baby. The Midwife was concerned that my milk may have started to dry up but it was flowing out easy and baby was loving it. We had to say in hospital for 3 nights and I strongly believe that meeting this Midwife was the reason, if it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t be feeding my daughter. So I guess my breastfeeding story is mostly down to luck and a little perseverance. If someone tells you you can’t do something, chances are there are ways around it. 7.5 months on and I’m still feeding my baby and I LOVE it.