More specifically dear me with newborn Tannah in 2005,
I’m writing you this on the day you will almost give up on breastfeeding.
This is the day you will be at the shops and be feeding Tannah in the parents room and see HER. You will see a woman casually pop a boob out the bottom of her shirt and feed her baby (not much older than your own 8 week old). It will seem like a big deal to you because she does it with such ease and then she has the nerve to flick through a magazine AND eat a sushi roll at the same time. You will be across the room fumbling with a feeding pillow (and thinking “who the hell has to take a feeding pillow to the shops!”), trying to coax out a flat nipple and then getting your baby attached without pain. It takes both your hands and all your concentration. And she feeds for aaaagggeesssss.
A large part of you will feel like walking over to that woman and pushing her sushi roll right out of her hands, but a bigger part of you will feel inadequate. It won’t be the first or last time you cry in public but this time you do it so the seemingly super woman across the room doesn’t notice. And you tell yourself that you are done with breastfeeding.
You will go home and cry some more to your husband who will remind you that it has gotten a bit easier since the start and that Tannah is gaining heaps of weight. You will call the ABA line who will talk you through it some more and you decide to try for a bit longer.
And before you know it the woman popping the boob out with ease and multitasking at the same time is you. It does get easy. So easy in fact, that you will go on to breastfeed Tannah until after her second birthday. This will blow your mind but you will breastfeed your second and third kids well into toddlerhood too-in fact you will tandem feed them for a year. Brace yourself.
So hang in there. You are so close. You’ll be all book (one day something called a smartphone) and coffee and breastfeeding at the same time before you know it.
This post is part of the “Dear Me” series to promote the Online Breastfeeding Cafe, a new initiative by the Australian Breastfeeding Association. It encourages women to talk and share and be part of the conversation about breastfeeding via a supportive online forum and facebook page.