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Mother’s milk or breast milk as they say is the best food for your baby and “you must give mother’s milk to your baby until your baby wants to have it.” I am sure we all must have heard these words by our own mothers or relatives on the arrival of the new little one in our arms. But this superfood is not easy to produce by all moms and so was the case with me.
When I held my bundle of joy in my arms I was clueless about how would I feed him, will I be able to satisfy his hunger?
Often when I remember those sleep-deprived days and nights, I thought I could not go through it. I was tired both from my mind and body, those sleepless days and night, I wanted someone to help me out…but I knew no one could do so.
There were many times when I just wanted to give up as I did not produce enough milk for my baby. Thankfully, my husband was always standing beside me and pushed me up to give our baby the best food. There were times when there was not enough milk supply and elders came up with words that were harsh to hear “your milk may not be flowing”, “give baby cow’s milk”, “baby must be sleeping hungry”, “eat lots of tur dal and you will have enough milk”, and the advises would go on right from mom to granny to neighbours, relatives and visitors.
Somedays, I would think of giving formula milk to my baby as my life would become easy but gradually when I started nursing him, I could feel that there is one superpower that women have and that is to give this superfood to their baby as this superfood cannot be replicated by anyone else in the world. It was a mixed emotion while nursing my baby happy to see him fulfill his needs and tired while feeding him during those sleepless nights. The breastfeeding journey continued with some days, more milk supply while other days with low supply. I was tired of feeding every two hours, in the bedroom, in the car, at the mall, and sometimes in the park. But I knew I had to keep giving him the best.
I wanted to continue nursing him as it was an unconditional bond that grew between the two of us – a bond of love, happiness, affection, and of enjoying being a woman. But soon I was pregnant and after a year I had to stop feeding him. It was the most terrible moment for him and me, my baby was not ready to accept formula and wanted to be close to me for his food but I was helpless. Slowly with time, he got used to formula milk and I was busy in my new pregnancy, the little one was now attended by all in the family so that I could get my peace of mind. Though the bedtime sessions were the most difficult to cut off as my little one wanted to nurse to get off to sleep.
During my hospital stay that was the time when he actually gave up on breastfeeding, when I was back home this curious boy was shying from me and the new one. And I can still recollect that he did not want my milk anymore as he had seen his little sister nursing. That night I cried as I had to forcefully let go of my breastfeeding journey from my son, this little one had an emotional attachment that was so pure, true, and selfless.
Breastfeeding was a difficult journey for me but yet it was the most blessed food for my baby, times were tough but it was the most beautiful thing that happened to me. Each one of us is different and so is our breastfeeding journey too it depends on how smoothly you would want your baby to pass through it. With this, I would like to add on a beautiful quote by C. JoyBell on breastfeeding…
“Breastfeeding is a beautiful thing, one of the most beautiful things that exist in nature. Think about how a woman can literally feed her baby with her body! In my eyes, this is a certain form of beauty, of divinity! To know that my body can not only form and bring another human being into the world, but that I can actually feed babies with my own milk from my own breasts— that puts me in a state of awe each time I think about it. It is an honour to be a woman.”
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