As you will know by now I have had a complicated relationship with breastfeeding. Initially I wanted to try but wasn’t dead set on it, then when I struggled in the early days I desperately wanted to do it, then as the months went on I started to feel resentful.
I am now at a comfortable place with it; she still feeds several (!!!) times a night but rarely in the day so I feel I’ve got some of my body back. It feels like an end is in sight with a natural stop, and I have a definite plan of action. I want to feed her til she’s 1; that is when she no longer requires milk as her main sustenance and can be weaned onto just cows milk. I am happy to start gradually slowing down feeds until she’s 2. 2 feels like my limit on how long I will be comfortable going on for and having that definite end in sight makes the continued feeding now easier.
Do you sense a “but”?
There’s a big one.
Miss Rose has started acquiring teeth. They are beautiful little pearly whites at the front of her mouth in a perfect pincer alignment. I am sure, dear reader, you can sense where this is going!
As they first started appearing if she clamped too hard I took her away and firmly said no, as per my Mummy Guru Imelda’s Mum’s advice. All good, these tentative nibbles were not pleasant but soon stopped and thus the feeding continued peacefully.
For whatever reason Miss Rose’s bedtime story, tonight The Tale Of Pigling Bland by Beatrix Potter, did not settle her as it ordinarily would. She fed a bit but wriggled and rolled and generally seemed unencumbered by the drowsiness befitting of such a time of night.
I shrieked and leapt away from her in agony; my poor bruised nipple!
After a moment when she and I had both calmed down I tentatively offered her the other boob.
Well that was that. Miss Rose was transferred swiftly to her cot, where she proceeded to screech baby profanity, as i fled from the room clutching my damaged bosom. Serious pain!
I got her to sleep with a little controlled crying and a lot of shhh-pat but then had to seriously consider that this could be the end of my breastfeeding career. As much as feeding her until she’s 1 is my goal, if these new vampiric tendencies are here to stay it will be a physical impossibility.
I am now in bed with her having a feed. I don’t know if I’m brave or stupid but she woke up wailing in misery earlier than normal so I decided to attempt another feed. Fortunately for her I had finished watching this weeks Great British Bake Off otherwise I may not have felt so generous and forgiving.
It was with an element of caution that I reoffered Hannibal Rose by boob but it appears for now she has learned her lesson. If she tries to take any more chunks out of me, however, that weaning process may be rushed forward!!
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Thanks as always for reading, and I’ll speak to you soon I hope!