I am ages away from having a second little person in our lives but I have already started thinking about some of the major things that are worrying me. The first being the way I actually have Bug- VBAC or C-Section? The second thing that is making me think quite a bit is how much I want to be able to breastfeed this little one- just like I did her big sister.
Breastfeeding didn't come naturally to me the first time around, in fact from from it, but I was determined to do it. I have said before on other posts that I am certainly not a breast feeding activist- in fact far from it, I don't have a huge opinion on how other people feed their babies, thats up to them, but I personally wanted to have a go at breastfeeding Mads. However I was also under the opinion that if it didn't work then I would rather have a happy baby and be a happy Mummy and formula feed instead.
Of course yes it hurt to start with. It hurt like hell, and at the time I wondered whether we would both be happier bottle feeding, I would literally sob with pain every time I tried to feed her. However we then had a slight setback (aka the worst day of my life so far) when she was a week old and we went to get her from her nap, and she was just pale and floppy and wouldn't wake up. Cue a mad dash to A and E, and a very scary few hours, followed by a stay in hospital for both of us, and I think I just got it into my head that in order to protect her from infection I needed to breastfeed. I wrote all about that here.
Breastfeeding wasn't easy for me. I was hospitalised with mastitis, had the infection another four times and Mads refused my left side so I had to literally be a hermit and leave my friends and baby groups to go home and express off one side every few hours. Otherwise I would have had very lopsided boobies.
Eventually it all settled down around six months and I loved feeding Mads. For me it was easy, natural, it helped me lose my baby weight while eating copious amounts of chocolate cake, and it cost nothing. I loved the closeness it brought us. When I did eventually finish which was around 10 or 11 months, I remember crying like a baby because my little girl was 'growing up too quick'. I had many happy times feeding her and I am glad that I got through all the struggles to do it.
Which brings me to baby number two. I have a massive fear that I won't be able to breastfeed this time around. And weirdly enough I care even more so this time. Last time if we hadn't had the setback and I had switched to formula, I wouldn't have known any different- we would have both been happy. This time I know that I managed to feed Mads for eleven months- I want to be able to do the same for her little sister.
I know they say it is easier the second time around as you know what you are doing a little more- but I am still worried. The usual what if she doesn't latch on correctly? Or what if my milk supply isn't strong enough? As it didn't come easy to us last time, I have a fear that it won't work this time around.
And I really want it too. I want that wonderful breastfeeding experience I had with Mads when she was around six months old- but I want it earlier this time, I want to enjoy and love feeding my newborn. I know it is early to think about it but I just really want a positive experience. Yes I am prepared to slather on the Lansinoh cream and for it to hurt to start with, but I just want to have those magical moments earlier this time.
I don't have an opinion on how others feed their babies, whatever makes a happy Mummy and a happy baby. But this Mummy won't be happy if she doesn't manage it this time around.
And I hate feeling that way.