I’m a Member of the Club!

When I used to think about having a successful nursing relationship with my children I would get very upset. I had encountered so many problems when I tried to nurse them. I had no support, and at the time I didn’t know who to reach out to. Each time my dream of breastfeeding crumbled, and I always thought I would never get in to the club.

The club isn’t a real thing, I know. Well, maybe there are clubs, but the club for me was imaginary. However, I do think it would be great if there was a club like in my imagination. I pictured women sitting in groups talking while their babies were nursing. In my mind they laughed often and enjoyed content babies. It was something that I never thought I could be a part of.

Fast forward through all of the hardships, a tubal ligation, and an unsuspected fifth child and here I am nursing my eight month old with no problems. Not to jinx it or anything, but we have had a pretty easy time with nursing. My little Lady Bug has latched perfectly since birth. She has adjusted well to my forceful let down, and has been gaining weight like a champ since day one! We are looking forward to a long time spending cuddle nursing moments together.

The best part is I am, at long last, in the club! But, wait where is my circle of moms? Where are my laughing ladies with content babies? I don’t know anyone else breastfeeding right now! My club stinks!

I realize, now that I am successfully nursing my baby, that the exclusive club, I imagined for so long, was only a dream. Honestly, if Lady Bug had problems with her latch, weight gain, or anything else I would have been on my own.

I have researched a lot since is started nursing my baby, and even thought about becoming a breastfeeding counselor or midwife.  I have a longing to surround myself with like-minded women.  I want to share my story of  making the switch from formula to breastfeeding, and how much better the latter can be!  I have tried to surround myself with virtual friends who can be a support network for my baby and me, if needed. But, I still don’t have anyone in my club.

I decided to reach out to people through writing a blog. I thought maybe someone could learn something from my experiences with raising my children. Yet, I am still alone in my club. Formula feeders tend to look at my like I am crazy when I nurse my baby, and they almost always offer their reasons for not Breastfeeding. I promise people, I am not judging you, nor am I asking for your explanation for the way you feed your baby. I get the impression from these women that they are thinking that I think I am better than them. Even if that’s not true, no one is inviting me to playdates, or mommy dates for that matter.

Okay, so my club can’t be a mix of formula and breastfeeding women. It seems like we are on opposite ends of the mommy spectrum, and as much as I would love to invite all of the formula feeding mammas I know over for coffee I just can’t deal with it all. While I don’t think I am better than them, I know the nutrition my baby OS getting from me is better than theirs and I am not going to defend myself constantly. Wait, what I mean defend myself? All of my formula feeding “friends” seem to think that Breastfeeding is too this or that. You know the comments so I don’t need to write them all.

Alas, I am still alone in my club.  I know that there are meetings through the La Leche League, but I thought it would be more like a group of women that just naturally gravitated toward one another because of like interests not like a group that you go find.  I am thinking about going to a La Leche meeting, though.  It may be the only way I can find a local group of women to relate to. I just have to get over my fear of walking in to a room filled with people I don’t know. I feel late for the party and I don’t want everything to stop and all the people to stare at me as I walk through the door. I know they won’t its ky silly imagination making things up again.

Here We Go Again!

First, is everyone in the entire world pregnant right now?  No, I know not EVERYONE is pregnant; however, it seems like many people I know are expecting a baby in the very near future.  While I wish I could be excited for them all, I am filled with worry, fear, and even guilt for all of these women.

Why do I worry for them?  I worry because in this important time of their lives I see many medical interventions being performed on them.  Many of these interventions are probably unnecessary.  I have read countless status updates, posted by my pregnant acquaintances, that tell of non-stress tests, predictions of antibiotics during birth, and inductions.  For the majority of these women they were not given any reason for many of the procedures.  My guess is because the woman’s insurance covers the procedure, the doctor will happily perform it, whether it is indicated necessary or not.

Why am I afraid for these women?  I fear that a lack the lack of knowledge about the medical community, particularly during pregnancy, makes these women very likely to simply “trust their doctor” rather than questioning the reasons for certain procedures.   Thereby, increasing the chances that these women will “need” a cesarean section.  Yes, cesareans save lives, but as we know they are routinely performed to ease busy doctor’s load, and as a result of interventions that should not have been.  Furthermore, after these women go through a cesarean the likelihood of them being allowed to vbac (vaginal birth after a cesarean) is low in the United States.

Why do I feel guilty?  I am guilty because my own fear of confrontation prevents me from saying anything that may save them from terrible birth experiences or unnecessary procedures.  Okay, maybe I am having delusions of grandeur here. I just wish I knew what to say and when to say it.  I can spout out facts like water from a fire hose, but I will likely leave a pregnant woman drenching with fear and doubt.  I don’t want to scare anyone.  I am also thinking about my own hatred of unsolicited advice.  I do not want anyone telling me how to raise my children, or how to give birth to them either. 

So here I sit with all of this information and no way of sharing it.  Another person I know has her induction scheduled.  By the way she had an induction with her first child, wich she thinks she needed because she wasn’t going in to labor on her own.  I doubt she wants to hear anything I have to say on the matter. 

I am seriously feeling like a breakfast cereal right now.  I long to be crunchy, alas I am but a soggy flake.