Are you a nursing mama? Do you secretly resent moms who bottle-feed and think they are taking the easy way out? They never have to worry about “scheduling” a feeding. They don’t have to hide in the back room to nurse if there are people around. They can prepare a bottle at any time, any place. These thoughts were mine up until a few days ago.

Not all breastfeeding turns out to be a good experience. The story of how I lost my milk supply!

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I exclusively breastfed my first child for an entire year, just like the professionals recommend. I chose to nurse because it was a way to save money by not buying formula. During that first year I didn’t realize how many challenges I would see; I didn’t realize that nursing would be so difficult.

I battled with oversupply and engorgement for the first half of the year. I could pump a full 12 ounces in 3 minutes. I literally had bags of extra stored milk in the freezer that I ended up throwing away because I couldn’t use it all. My baby was very healthy, but I still could find multiple things I hated about breastfeeding. Overall I felt it was an inconvenience.

I can vividly recall talking to a friend who said she lost her milk at the 4-month mark with all 4 of her babies. She rehearsed all of the things she did with each baby to try to keep her milk, but nothing helped. She had no choice but to stop nursing.

In the back of my mind, I figured she was just not doing something right. She must not have been drinking enough water, or using the pump correct. I judged that she must have just got lazy and not nursed on a schedule, and just too easily given her babies formula. So it was obvious to me that her milk dried up.

Well two years later my second baby came and I wasn’t nervous at all about breastfeeding because I felt I had already jumped through all the hoops. I knew what challenges I would face and how I could be better prepared to handle them.

However. Was. I. Ever. Wrong.

Let me tell you just a small summary of the events that happened that completely changed my view of nursing.

For starters, I had a baby {some might call that a traumatic experience, but I say, no biggie 😉 }. I was battling extreme emotional swings for about 2 weeks when I found out that my mom, who is my dearest and closest friend, has Stage 3 Level 3 Ovarian Cancer. I’m not sure how to completely describe what impact that has had on me. To say the least, all of the events that transpired with that were a whirlwind and incredibly emotional.

I started a business that same month. I would spend nap time, and bedtime until 1:00 every morning to manage a new business {and yes, I still nursed a newborn throughout the night too}.

My husband {who is my rock, the person I rely on most for consistency and support} started on a new anxiety medication where his personality continued to change. He was trying to regulate which type of medication was right but it was continual change over the course of several months – and the side effects weren’t always awesome ones.

I battled nursing because either my daughter had a lazy latch or I had some type of thrush. It was incredibly, incredibly painful to nurse. It got to the point where I would pull my daughter off early because it hurt so bad; then I wouldn’t clear out all of my milk so I started to get clogged ducts.

Needless to say I was stressed. My anxiety level was at a continual high. It all finally came to a head last week. I lost my milk. No matter how much I pumped, how much I fed my daughter, days of drinking that Mother’s Milk Tea, or the Motherlove More Milk stuff, or how much I drank gallons of water, still nothing. I wasn’t producing anything.

I pumped again and again and would maybe get an ounce. Out of desperation I tried to feed my daughter formula but with absolute certainty she would not take it.

It was then; in the moments I didn’t have anything to feed my baby that I changed. After a few hours of crying, on both ends, not knowing what to do or how to feed her, I put her once again on my breast. I knew there wasn’t anything in there for her to eat, but I thought maybe the comfort of my body would help. I heard her little tummy growl as to cry out and say she was starving. My heart completely broke.

The option of nursing was taken away from me. No matter how much I wanted to, how hard I tried, no matter what I did, I couldn’t nurse. It was not until then that I gained sympathy for those mothers who truly don’t have the option to nurse.

I desperately wanted that comfort of feeding my baby from me, not from a bottle. I desperately wanted to provide what no one else could. I wanted that bond that I didn’t realize I had created. I wanted the ability to nurse again.

The story actually does not have an end yet. I am still in the middle of that battle. I will continue to do all I can to nurse again, but from this day forward I won’t take advantage of the ability my body does have to nurse. I won’t wish away the moments that I’m sitting there not being productive. I won’t be so quick to judge someone else who has a bottle. And I will continue to pray that my body will be able to produce milk once again.

Read more about low milk from the ULTIMATE LIST on awesome articles that talk about how to increase your milk supply!

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