The internet is full of photos shared by people who want to show off their happiest of moments. Breastfeeding mothers enjoy posting their breastfeeding photos on the internet to share them with friends, family and like-minded mothers. I do this often. My favorite photos are of Jack sleeping peacefully on my breast or doing a fancy “gymnurstics” move. But this is only half of the story. There are plenty of moments that are not as joyful. I love breastfeeding. It is the thing that I am and always will be the most proud of. But we had a rough start and to be honest we still have rough days. I cried a lot in the beginning. I felt isolated. I felt like a failure. And, while we are still going strong at 17 months, I still have moments where I feel like I can’t go on. Some days it feels like Jack is nursing every 3 minutes, biting me, twisting my nipples, fussing at me breast and never satisfied. The struggles are different than in the beginning, but they are struggles nonetheless. One way that I cope is by looking back at all that we have been through. If we have survived this far surely we can persevere through any challenge that comes our way. Breastfeeding mothers persevere.
Abby Theuring, MSW