This game of parenting has twists and turns.
I was thrown off my game when I discovered that experience breastfeeding one child didn’t necessarily ensure success breastfeeding another.
My left nipple tore when my second daughter was hours old. It was her first feed on that side and I was already damaged goods! Eighteen months nursing her sister didn’t really matter. This was a new mouth!
The upside? As a mom who’d been around the block, I knew it COULD be better. And I knew some providers who could help make it better. So I got on the phone and we made appointments….lactation consultants, craniosacral therapist, pediatric chiropractor, etc.
Let me also say that the first time around, I did a lot of breastfeeding groups. They were amazing for learning from others and feeling supported. This time, I went straight to the private consultation. I wanted hands and eyes on this latch! I walked away from all these visits with a plan.
We had a situation and we sought out a solution. If you’re wondering, Mabel had a lot of tension in her neck that was keeping her from rotating her head to both sides evenly, hence the hurt nipple on just one side.) Within that first week, her mobility was improving and I was healing. Phew.
It made me think about the things we suffer through, not knowing that they can be better.
It made me think about the discomfort of all kinds (physical, emotional, relational) that we dismiss as “part of motherhood.”
It helped me adopt a new mantra for mothering this second time around:
I am not going to settle.
Not for anything less than strong, happy, healthy, grounded.
Mama, you shouldn’t settle either.
This job is hard. We deserve to bring our best to it. It’s easy to say our partners or our children deserve our best, but really WE deserve that the most!
***Parts 2-4 of this series feature a variety of experts from our Denver community with wisdom and skills to share so that we can stop settling for less than our best. Stay tuned!