**I wrote this post in the middle of April, but never “published” it. Here is it, finally…
Breastfeeding is such a “taboo” subject, but since this is MY blog, I’m going to talk about it.
For me, breastfeeding was never something I questioned doing… I knew it is what I wanted to do, I knew it is the absolute best thing for a baby, and that’s about all I DID know.
I have now been successfully nursing Hudson almost 8 months and I couldn’t be prouder of myself, Hudson and even Andrew. I hope to nurse him until he is a year old. After that, I haven’t really thought about too much. In the last 8 months I’ve learned a lot; nursing a baby is a full-time job, society isn’t very accepting of breastfeeding, pumping breastmilk sucks (but is a necessary evil sometimes), and it is nothing short of a miracle that our bodies can support the life of a baby.
One of the clearest/sweetest memories I have from right after Hudson was born occurred a few nights after we brought him home. It was the middle of the night and he was up to eat. I was feeding him on our bed and Andrew was just sitting up looking at us. When I asked what he was doing he said he wanted to help and I thanked him but said “go to bed! There’s nothing you can do and I’ll need you to be rested tomorrow so I can nap!” What a great dad, wanting to help me take care of Hudson in the middle of the night, but he couldn’t do too much for us in that instance!
Nursing is something special that is just for H and me. Sometimes I wonder if Andrew is jealous of that special bond, but then I see them when they are playing together, and I know they have their special “thing” also.
I was very lucky when I went back to work because my job allowed me to pump during the day, which was awesome. It was really important to me to be able to feed Hudson, even if I couldn’t be there with him. However, a lot of jobs don’t make it possible for employees to do it, or it won’t work with someone’s specific position.
So why is breastfeeding so taboo? Why can people be ok with girls/women walking around in booty shorts/skirts and low-cut tops, but a woman can’t feed her child in public, even with a cover?
The World Health Organization recommends exclusive breastfeeding for the first six months of life. Here are some statistics from The Centers of Diseases Control and Prevention’s 2011 breastfeeding report card (CDC), showing that in the U.S. National:
- 74.6% of babies were ever breastfed
- 44.3% of babies were still breastfeeding at 6 months
- 23.8% of babies were still breastfeeding at 12 months
- 35.0% of babies were exclusive breastfeeding at 3 months (no formula)
- 14.8% of babies were exclusive breastfeeding at 6 months (no formula)
Those numbers are something to think about. I don’t judge a person who feeds their child formula, but I will be the first person to support you and share my knowledge on breastfeeding if you are interested. If you’ve ever judged a woman for breastfeeding, hopefully now you’ll take a minute to think about how great it is for a baby and consider changing your thoughts about it.