I like to consider myself one of those natural mamas. I delivered my babies drug-free, used cloth diapers, bought an organic crib mattress and totally committed to breast feeding. Thanks to a great doula and hours of Internet research, Mother Nature and I were on the same page when my son was born. Ok fine, so the cloth diapers only lasted 6 months, but it was nursing that truly tested my resolve. Let’s be honest here. Breast feeding is HARD.
Huge, engorged breasts? Ok, I managed that. Nipples so sore that I had to shower with my arm across my chest? Awful, but at least I got to shower. Mastitis a month in? Um, please remind me why I’m doing this? Luckily (thankfully!), nursing did get easier with each week. My son mastered his latch and I mastered the football hold while watching the Real Housewives. I loved the flexibility of being a portable food source and I really loved not having to wash multiple bottles daily.
After my daughter was born, she latched on immediately. I’m an expert, I thought. This time nursing will be a breeze! But it wasn’t. Like, not at all. Not even a tiny bit. Back were my painful breasts, destroyed nipples and blocked ducts. Had I even done this before? At least this time I knew about the gear. And if I’ve learned anything from my husband, gear is what truly separates us from animals. I had a BrestFriend for out and about, a Boppy for my rocker at home, my favorite nursing bras and yes, even cabbage leaves when I felt a sore spot emerging.
If only TenderHer pillows were around when I was bemoaning my cracked nipples for the second time. I have no doubt they would have been a major part of my daily routine, right along side coffee and yoga pants. All things Mother Nature loves too.