Breast feeding is/was hard. Crazy ridiculous hard. No one tells you just how hard it is either.
I have pretty much failed at it. I gave it as much as I could in the beginning. I still feel like I could have given it more, but there's not much that I can do about it now. I definitely feel like women should be more educated about beast feeding before they give birth. I though that I knew a fair amount, but it wasn't enough.
It all started with the fact that I have inverted/flat nipples. Technically this should not be a huge problem if you know how to deal with it properly. For me it was though. It cause intense pain. I dreaded every time I needed to feed my baby. That fact alone made me incredibly sad. A mother should not dread feeding her baby. It's suppose to be a wonderful bonding experience. Of course lots of women go through pain in the beginning and that can be normal.
(While trying to deal with the pain of having inverted/flat nipple I would occasionally give Teagan formula... when the pain was just too much. Big mistake though.)
A few weeks after giving birth I got mastitis. Mastitis was awful.... absolutely AWFUL. I had a fever of 103 and I could barely wear a t-shirt. Then they tell you that it's best to keep nursing... ha... funny. I couldn't do it. The nipple problem combined with Mastitis was too much for me. So I let the breast that had Mastitis dry up... aka, no longer produce milk. One breast is capable of producing enough milk for your baby so I thought that's what I could do.
(Now I've started giving Teagan even more formula, but hoping to get back to strictly breast feeding.)
Since I got Mastitis I had to take antibiotics to help take care of it. By taking antibiotics and taking enough probiotics with them I got thrush. Thrush hurt too. Wearing a bra was quite painful. Thrush was pretty much the last straw for me. I was emotionally drained and just couldn't take anymore pain.
So the plan of breast feeding exclusively died. Formula was it. Which I hated and still hate, but as long as my baby is fed and happy that's all that matters.
Through out all of this I cried and cried and CRIED about not being able to do it the way it's supposed to be done. I have felt like such a quitter and wimp. I feel like I should of been able to do it and that I didn't give it as much as I could have. I know that for the most part this all isn't true, but I just wasn't ever prepared to fail at breast feeding. That's the one thing that I never expected.
Now we just nurse once a day... at night just before bed, but I'm probably going to be stopping that soon too.
I plan to be better prepared with our next child and at least now I kind of know what to expect. Next time I'm going to give it all I've got and hope it's enough.