Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Angela's Nursing Journey

         Tonight we have a short but sweet guest post by Angela about her journey from overcoming the problems that prevented her from breastfeeding her first daughter to successfully exclusively breastfeeding her second. I hope you all enjoy it.        

 Angela's Nursing Journey

          I gave birth to my daughter Madison in November 2010 and, after watching my sister successfully breastfeed, I knew that was what I would do!  I never expected to face the challenges that I did.  It was not easy for me, it didn't come naturally but I really wanted to make it work.  Madison had a poor latch from the beginning due to flat nipples and I tried to pull them out pumping, using a shield, I tried anything and everything. We were never able to successfully breastfeed. I pumped for 4 months, before giving up.  My doctor at the time kept telling me how she wasn't gaining enough and that I needed to supplement, I never trusted that what I was giving her was enough, I was naive and didn't have a support system.  I was exhausted and my breast hurt.  I couldn't hold my newborn without crying. I had mastitis three different times and also ended up with MRSA on my breast. At that point, I made the decision to stop and just enjoy my baby.

          After I had Madison and went through the struggles that I did without support, I was determined to make it work the second time around.  In May of 2013, I gave birth to my daughter Emma.  Prior to having her I reached out to the local LLL group and had a great support system in place.  Again we had our struggles with poor latch due to flat nipples but I wanted it to work.  Emma is now 12 weeks old and has been breastfed from the beginning. I still use a nipple shield but am able to remove it for part of my feeds.  It has still been a challenge, Emma has a dairy intolerance and I have had to remove dairy from my diet in order to continue. It is a sacrifice that I am happy to make.  She is thriving.  I still second guess myself and worry that she isn't “gaining” enough because of my first experience.  Knowledge is power and I feel that I better prepared myself the second time around.

About the Author:

Angela is a 29 year old mom to two girls, Madison (2 years old) and Emma (12 weeks old).

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