Monday, October 30, 2006

The price of breastfeeding

Electric double breast pump: $300

Lactation consultant #1: $140

Lactation consultant #2: $95

Prescription nipple ointment: $50

Nursing bras, breast shells, nipple shields, lanolin ointment, nursing pads, etc.: $80

Weeks of inflamed, cracked and/or bleeding nipples: $??

Kink in the neck and sore back muscles: $??

Finally feeling you’ve got the hang of breastfeeding and giving your baby the best nutrition: Priceless

Yes, even though nursing is still painful at latch-on and I sometimes feel raw at the end of the day, I think it’s going to work. I’m still clumsy at it. You won’t see me nursing in front of anyone, probably for a long time yet. But I’ll keep going.

I’m grateful to everyone who posted encouraging words after my griping about breastfeeding because otherwise I wouldn’t have known there are others who suffer with nursingitis. Besides your comments, nothing I read, heard or watched indicated nursing could be so hard. Just knowing other women admit it's hard -- that nursing can litereally suck -- helped me so much. Flybaby would probably be drinking formula if it weren't for you all. There's nothing wrong with formula -- heck, I was raised on that, along with regular ol' cow's milk -- but when you really want to breastfeed, formula is a second choice.

Power to the blog!

This is what I love about reading others' blogs. When people can write about their trials and make them funny, that's so fun to read. But I really love it when people use blogs to offer hope and encouragement.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you're having a better time with breastfeeding! You're a much stronger person than I...

9:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great post! I'm so glad it's working for you. The latch pain WILL go often takes more time than the books tell us, however. Just think, if you have another baby you'll be old hat at nursing and only one of you has to learn what to do. It's got to be easier, right?
(That's what I tell myself, anyway!)

10:52 PM  
Blogger Awesome Mom said...

I am glad I was able to encourage you. There are a lot of hard things about being a mom that really should not be so hard if we would just open up to other moms and admit that everything is not smooth all the time.

12:31 AM  
Blogger LBA said...

Aww - that is so sweet.
I'm sorry my advice was no good - it was kind of 'particular' though, so probably no good for 80% of the population...

And yes, you are really good .. but let me tell you another thing ... I weaned at 8months, which seemed a good age for both of us ( he initiated ) .. and from there I entered formula-city.

My God.
RESPECT for all those who did formula from the start. Those funbags, containing all that goodness, no sterilation, mixing, making, bottles ... what a blessing !!

I would have been a mess without breasts ! :)

The fact you're persevering with yours - even more kudos. it can't be easy to be in pain and still want to do it ... yay you :)

4:15 AM  
Blogger Nicole said...

Congrats on officially making it past that first unbearable hump. You can see the light at the end of the tunnel now :) Your baby will thank you, I promise!!

7:50 AM  
Blogger Mamacita Tina said...

My nursing dilemma right got teeth! She's only bitten once, but they're sharp and they rub. Putting her in different positions definitely helps though.

8:00 AM  
Blogger Freckle Face Girl said...

It is true, you don't fully find out the complaints until you start voicing yours. I thought I was going to die when the milk came in.

10:52 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad it's improving. For the most part I like to think it's all about believing you can do it, and having the confidence and perseverance to find what you need to know to help it work.

It's a shame that a process as wonderful and nurturing as breastfeeding seems to be associatetd with embarassment--either at being unable to breastfeed (which is mostly a crock, a lot of women think they can't, and so they fulfill those expectations), or at being uncomfortable touching and talking about their breasts, worrying that by simply feeding your baby, you're offending someone. Feeding babies is what they're for!

I'm also amazed at what you've spent to help it happen. Clearly money well-spent. But lactation consultants? Wow! Last I knew, LLL was pretty much free. I liked going to their meetings, too. Once a month (when I could manage it), a time to meet with other moms, talk about any baby or breastfeeding-related concerns with those who'd "been there, done that," see other babies, and not worry about looking dumpy or needing privacy to breastfeed (cuz they were all of like minds, and approving).

One thing that surprised me, though, was that while I didn't really have any pain (except for maybe some discomfort when engorged) while breastfeeding the first kid (always seemed like when they were latched on correctly nothing was uncomfortable, but obviously YMMV), watch out for the second! Something about the ocytocin, I think. Nothing horrible, but I noticed uterine contractions and a little more tingling in the nipples with let-down while nursing the second one. And fortunately I'd read that it was "normal," and didn't freak out. Way too early for you to think about another one (I always said, let's get the first one out of diapers!), but I hope that's in the future for you. It's so rewarding to see your kids enjoying each other's company, sticking up for each other, and being proud of their siblings' accomplishments.

Margie, proud mom of kids aged 21, 18 and 16 :)

4:12 PM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

I am glad that it is going better for you! With Mark I had no problems, and I thought 'why do people make this out to be so difficult?' THEN, with Abby she always had problems latching. AND I got a yeast infection on my nipple. The skin was raw and open and I couldn't nurse on that boob for 4 days!!

8:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hang in there man. it's hard but it gets easier. promise.

get yourself some of these:


You do read right? hehe

4:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm late to the party -- but something that got me through the frustration was the La Leche League mom-to-mom board. Other mothers and LLL representatives answered all of my questions with total patience (even though most of my questions were things they have probably answered hundreds of times).

4:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Breastfeeding *is* hard, but so worth it once you get the hang of it! Hang in there ... it took us several months, but then it went so well we nursed for a full year after that. It's a fantastic tool to have when your baby is learning to crawl, pull up, and walk -- cause nursing is like magic when they're crying over a boo-boo.

Good luck to you!

10:46 PM  

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