My first baby arrived when I was a mere 21, yes, I was 21 once! Looking back, in the grand scheme of things I had barely left school long enough to work out what sort of a mother I wanted to be and naively embarked on the motherhood ideals many a young (and often older) woman believe lay ahead of them during their pregnancy. So, when Hugo popped into this world, “popped” being euphoric recall as the reality was it took the best part of 2 days to get the little gremlin out, I just assumed that I would breastfeed my little bundle as my mother had so easily done with me for the best part of two years!
Latching on seemed a doddle from what I remember, but my paranoia that he wasn’t getting enough food thus leading to him not sleeping enough, leading to him screaming endlessly and therefore not eating enough (see the cycle there?) was very much the issue. I soon became an over-tired, emotionally wrecked dairy cow – on the pump at least three times a day, just so I could decant the breast-milk into a bottle to see how much he was eating and try to bring an end to the cycle. I was stressed and my baby was stressed. This was not a happy time. To be honest, the rest is a bit of a blur, until I woke up one morning with cheeks like Aunt Sally, boobs like boulders on which you could easily fry an egg and feeling like I’d had a house dropped on me! Welcome Mastitis! This hadn’t happened over night, but I’d ignored the signs for a good part of a week before admitting there was a problem – as the last thing any new mother wants to admit to is that there is a problem and that all is not well.View Post