Mum, Victoria’s Breastfeeding Experience

Today, mum Victoria shares her breastfeeding experience with us…
Mum, Victoria’s Breastfeeding Experience

Did you know you always wanted to breastfeed?

Today, mum Victoria shares her breastfeeding experience with us…

"When I was pregnant I read different books about the first few days with a new baby and breastfeeding a newborn, how little did I know -breastfeeding wouldn't be as easy as I thought.

When L was born we had skin to skin and I tried to latch her onto my breast but she didn't seem interested. I was reassured that it was normal, that we should try again sometime later and if not then she would definitely be hungry in 12 hours. The first day we spent having lots of skin to skin and attempts to feed but nothing worked. Once midwives realised that it had been over 12 hours and L didn't latch on they called a breastfeeding counsellor to assess the situation and suggest what to do next. In the meantime, midwives offered to hand express colostrum in a small syringe. I was shown how to hand express which seemed easy, but once I started expressing I realised that it is hard work!

My sister was helping me with expressing during visiting hours and at night a student midwife was helping every two hours. I had the privilege of staying in my own room so it felt less stressful as I didn’t have to think about other mums or babies, but nonetheless it was a very difficult time. L was constantly crying from hunger and because of that she refused to sleep and I felt embarrassed to press the bell every time I needed help expressing. I crumbled once when my little helper, a student midwife, finished her shift and instead I had a middle-aged midwife who didn't seem to give a monkeys about me being upset and worried about hand expressing. I couldn't wait till the next day, I hoped for a better day, more colostrum and of course my husband beside me. 

The next day I had two lovely meals at the hospital and we had many different midwives trying to help us. This time they showed us how to use an electric pump and tried cup feeding, once they saw that I was comfortable, they discharged me.

When we arrived home it was time to feed L and as I had learnt how to use a hospital electric breastpump I was confident in using the one I had prepared to use at home. I had read all the instructions, set it up and started expressing or trying to. I sat there listening to the loud noise of the electric pump and watched the only drop of milk stuck in one of the tubes. We checked the pump was put together correctly, tried again and still no milk. I tried hand expressing and nothing came out again. In a moment of despair I put L to latch on my breast and I couldn't believe my eyes… for the first time L latched on and was drinking!

Our second night we spent trying to express milk with the electric pump, hand express and constantly called our midwife's emergency number for advice and support. Over the next few days we received contrasting advice from both breastfeeding support workers and health visitors and had different midwives shaking their heads in disappointment that L hadn’t put enough weight on, which is the reason why 16 months later I still stress about L's weight!

The first few weeks were hard, confusing and overwhelming but I stayed strong and determined because I wanted to do this for my daughter, to prove to others that I can do it and to show that only those who believe and persevere can breastfeed. 

No matter how hard it was, it was an incredible experience and 16 months later I don't want it to stop!"

A big thank you to mum, Victoria, from My Little L Blog for sharing her Breastfeeding Story with us. If you would like to share your experience of breastfeeding on our blog please email our PR team on  emily@bumppr.co.uk for further details. Thank you.