I've always known I would breastfeed. Even when I would play with dollbabies as a small girl, I would pretend to nurse them. It made sense in every way to me. It is cheap, it is healthier for Baby and Mama (you burn 500 calories a day breastfeeding), you don't have to haul around formula every time you go somewhere, you don't have to get up at night to make bottles. I knew all of these things and I knew breastfeeding was right for me and my future babies.
The next day we went home. Finally home. We curled up in our own bed and I wondered why I ever left it in the first place. There is no place like home. When we woke up I latched her on. Still ouch! But this time creamy, white, sweet smelling milk poured from my breast into my baby's mouth. She choked on it. I held her up to help her catch her breath. But the milk kept on coming. I grabbed a burp cloth and held it under my breast as the milk steamed out. My mama came in from the next room and said that my milk had come in. I finished nursing my daughter and went to change my milk soaked shirt. I put on a Glamourmom nursing tank, then we went back to sleep. A day later my nipples were cracked and sore. I'd gasp when she latched on. The lanolin didn't seem to help much, but Motherlove Nipple Cream helped a lot. I slathered it on. The thicker the better. Ahh! Sweet relief. The next day was better, and the day after that better still. I learned how to nurse her laying down, and how to keep my shirts from getting soaked as often. I finally felt like I was getting the hang of it.
Soon I was an expert nurser. I had accomplished my goal. What's more, I found that I wasn't doing it because it made sense anymore. Even if they invented a magical formula that was as healthy as breastmilk and you could get it free, ready made, in any place, any time, I would still breastfeed my daughter. I love to see her look up at me and smile so big that milk spills out of her mouth. I love that she needs me and not just some plastic and silicone filled with artificial milk. I love to wake up from a nap with her and find her still attached to me (physically and emotionally). I love that, for that small amount of time, she is a part of me. I love breastfeeding.