Becky, Juniper & Zebedee
"When I found out I was pregnant with my 5th child, my daughter was only 7 months old at the time. I was still breastfeeding her a lot and planned to breastfeed for as long as she needed but by the time I was 12 weeks pregnant my normally abundant supply had completely gone. I had massive feelings of guilt that our breastfeeding journey had come to an abrupt end so early. It was forced upon her and I felt so sad for her. I became determined to try and continue and to hopefully tandem feed when the baby arrives. I bought a Supplementary Nursing System which I used to feed her formula every morning and evening before bed. This kept her interested at the breast because she was actually getting milk rather than dry nursing. All the other times in the day I would offer her the breast and dry nurse her, she was comforted by this but also quite frustrated that she wasn't getting milk. It was a tough 6 months, I had really painful nipples at times but continued to keep to the routine and hoped that by the time the baby was born she would still be interested in breastfeeding.
When I was 39 weeks pregnant I suddenly noticed that she was interested in feeding more often than usual. I realised that she was finally getting some colostrum and this gave me hope that my baby was probably going to be born fairly soon. Sure enough I went into labour a few days later and had a beautiful baby boy born at home. Soon after he was born she came up to meet him and watched me breastfeeding him. Within an hour or so she was latched on too and it felt amazing. My guilt had disappeared. It was fantastic for her because it helped her to accept the new baby and to bond with him. It was fantastic for me because I had no issues with engorged breasts or sore nipples, it was by far the easiest bit of my breastfeeding journey. Fast forward 8 months and we've had no problems whatsoever, my son has piled on the pounds despite sharing milk with his sister and they have developed a very special bond which I hope will continue."
Mother Nurture is an ongoing portrait series created to celebrate breastfeeding Mothers. If you would like to take part drop me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org