Breastfeeding: Natural Nourishment

nursingAs we are coming up on my son’s first birthday later this month, I feel an end nearing for one chapter in my child-rearing years: breastfeeding.

For now, we say we’re not having any more children, but who knows what the future will hold. If this is indeed the case…my husband and I calculated it and I became pregnant for the very first time in December 2009. Since then, I have either been pregnant or nursing for 4 entire years non-stop.

My first pregnancy ended in a miscarriage at 12 weeks, then I had my daughter. I nursed her for 11 months until I become pregnant again. I miscarried my third pregnancy at 8 weeks and then had my son, who I am still nursing and he’s going on a year old. Whew…my body has not been my own for a long time now and I’m not sure what I’ll do with myself when it is (probably have a bottle glass of wine and start working off these last 7 lbs of baby chub!).

Natural Nursing

That word, breastfeeding, might make some people uncomfortable – I know it did me until I had kids of my own. But it truly has been my favorite thing I have done with and for my children. There is nothing in this world that is more natural, healthy and beautiful than nursing.

You are given this brand new baby with no inkling of who they are and what to do with them and when they are screaming their little heads off, one thing in the whole world can comfort them – your boob. Both of my babies absolutely loved being nursed – I mean, really looooved it. I consider myself lucky because my babies were natural eaters and I never struggled with nursing. They would kick their little legs and get so excited when I’d bring out the boppy pillow and I knew all was right in the world. And that’s the best feeling in the world for a mother. It’s something only you can give them and it’s an honor for me to be the one to nourish their tiny bodies.

I know it’s not a hard rule for weening, but as his first birthday is approaching, I’m almost feeling a bit sad…I am really going to miss breastfeeding. There is nothing healthier for their growing bodies and the best part is, it’s 100% free (formula is expensive!). It’s something that I’ve truly enjoyed doing because it is the most intimate connection you can make with your baby and God had this really special plan when he designed us this way.

10 Breastfeeding Benefits

I am not here to judge mamas who use formula (I was fed formula myself as a baby and turned out just fine!) because we all are doing the best we can but there are so many really amazing breastfeeding benefits for both mothers and babies!

  1. It helps contract your uterus back to normal size after birth
  2. It can burn up to 500 calories daily for the mama, just by producing milk
  3. Breastfeeding mamas have a lower risk of breast, uterine and ovarian cancer
  4. Breast milk is FULL of antibodies and strengthens baby’s immune system
  5. Breast milk has all the needed nutrients to protect and nourish your growing baby
  6. Infants who are nursed have fewer dental cavities throughout their lives
  7. Prevents stomach viruses, lower respiratory illnesses, ear infections, and meningitis
  8. Lowers the risk of baby developing allergies
  9. Researchers have found a connection between breastfeeding and cognitive development
  10. Reduces your child’s risk of becoming overweight or obese

So…if you are an expecting mother and you’re still on the fence about whether to nurse or not, my biggest advice is to just give it a fair try and stick with it for at least 3-4 weeks (the first week of nursing isn’t exactly pleasant). It does get easier as you and baby both learn more about each other, just be patient! And I encourage you to do some research and even sign-up for a breastfeeding class at your place of delivery. I remember getting so much information from that class and it’s really what made my mind up about it the first time around!

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2 thoughts on “Breastfeeding: Natural Nourishment

  1. Lovely article! I couldn’t agree more – breastfeeding has been one of my favorite parts about being a new mama. Even though my baby is only three months old, and my husband and I plan on having more, I know that I’ll be sad when those days come to an end!

  2. Pingback: Happy 5th Birthday, Blog! | Katherine Smith, a place of passion & love

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