The Breastfeeding Diaries: Heather from Live Love Laugh

February 19, 2014

My name is Heather and I blog over at Live Love Laugh. I currently have a 4 month old baby girl (Riley) who is exclusively breastfed. Riley is a happy girl and loves nursing. She will also take a bottle of breast milk. Even though Riley is my second child this is my first time breastfeeding. Her Brother (3.5 yo) was a preemie and didn't take to the breast because he was in the NICU and has always had feeding issues. I pumped for 5.5 months so he could have breast milk in a bottle, supplimented with preemie formula for extra calories. I was happy that I pumped with him so he could have breast milk but pumping day after day was exhausting and I ended up hating it.

This is my experience with nursing. I fully support a moms right to nurse or use formula and do what they feel is right for there family. I really wanted to nurse after not being able to nurse my oldest. I believe it’s the best thing for baby to have breast milk and I wanted that bond with her.

Riley eats every two hours during the day, almost like clockwork. She sleeps 8-9 hours at night, nurses, then goes back down for another 2-3 hours. After her morning nursing I pump to get all the milk out, I’m quite full in the morning. I have been able to freeze a large stash of milk for bottles. My supply has been excellent. I am fortunate to be a SAHM so I can nurse her all day, most days. We waited until one month old to introduce a bottle and I’m happy she does well with that so I am able to be gone for more than 2 hours if needed.

The bond that nursing has created is amazing. It’s only something I can provide to my daughter and the time we get together is so special to me. Even in the beginning with the late night/early am feedings it was nice to be just her and I in the quiet house, it helped me fall more in love with her.

I was surprised at how natural breastfeeding was. I was nervous at first that it would be weird but it feels so natural. Even nursing in public (with a cover) was easy for me!I never grew up around women who nursed and was never exposed to it as being 'normal' but I really support the normalize breastfeeding movement. I want to be able to nurse her anywhere (with cover) and make it normal for us.

Although I found breastfeeding this time to be easier, it was difficult in the beginning because she wouldn't latch. She ended up dropping her 10% body weight before we left the hospital and they were about to add formula to her diet. I worked with a lactation consultant, stating using a nipple shield, and she caught on at 5 days old. She then gained over a pound in 2 days. We never had to give her formula. We are still using the nipple shield which is hard, I always have to make sure they are with me and clean otherwise she won’t eat. 

I wish that more women would talk about the struggles of nursing, and the joys. I didn't expect the beginning to be so hard. I am lucky that I have a very supportive husband and I had great help in the hospital, and after. I can see how women throw in the towel, it's hard. I am really glad I stuck with it and now have a  successful nursing relationship with Riley. It was hard to admit that I have no clue what I'm doing and I needed help but I'm so glad I did. Nursing may be 'instinct' but it's something new and you have to learn. My advise for new moms is to keep at it and ask for help. And keep asking for help. Have a support team. My husband is very supportive and helps in any way he can. He supports my nursing and has been my cheerleader along the way.

Want to share your breastfeeding story? I would love to have you! I am currently booked out until October 2014....but don't let that scare you! You can still reserve your spot now! And if you are currently pregnant and think you might try breastfeeding let me know....I feature ALL types of stories, breastfeeding or not, so we can even reserve a spot for you! Email me at thegirlintheredshoes @ gmail. And be sure to check out the rest of the Breastfeeding Diaries series at the top of my navigation bar. 

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7 Responses to “The Breastfeeding Diaries: Heather from Live Love Laugh”

  1. I am so surprised to hear how many people the nipple shields helps. I had never heard or seen one before I had my daughter. She was the same way, could not latch on without it. Eventually, around 6 months we were able to drop the shield and she is still nursing at 21 months old. (She'll wean eventually, right?)

  2. Thanks for including me in the bf-ing diaries. Riley has since stopped using the shield, on the right side. Why only the right?!? LOL Not sure but it's a step forward!! She started solids and loves food but is still nursing strong!

  3. So happy to read Heather's story on here!! Love her blog!

  4. Riley is adorable! I'm glad that breastfeeding has gone so well for you!

  5. Yeah! I love a breastfeeding story with a happy ending!

  6. If I ever get pregnant (darn infertility) I plan to breast feed. It's totally something I missed out on with my daughter (she's adopted) but we were still able to create a bond. What is a nipple shield?

    You can find me blogging about "Life on the Parsons Farm" :

  7. I had no idea what a nipple shield was before I had my son and we had some issues with breastfeeding. He is now 9 months old and we STILL use the shield! It's the only way we are able to breastfeed, so I figure if that's the way it has to be then it's better than not being able to breastfeed! A lot of moms are not even sure what the shields are, and it makes me sad because I think they can be very helpful to new moms who have trouble getting their babies to latch or who experience a lot of pain while breastfeeding. Thank you for sharing your story!:)


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