This next post was fun for me to read, it’s by my best friend Marisa. I felt a special connection because I watched her go through it, I remember some of those moments from an outside perspective. I watched her as she grew into her role of motherhood, spectacularly loving her babies and always doing what was best for them no matter what. Marisa is giving a very interesting point of view as a mother of two who was not able to breast feed her first baby (my godson Atticus who by the way ROCKS) and has successfully been breastfeeding her daughter Penelope (Romans future wife) for almost 7 months now!!! I hope you all love this, I know I do. I’ve been lucky to begin motherhood with a best friend by my side that has experienced a lot of the same things. Navigating through this journey with her to talk to about everything has been an indescribable blast. Again, this is a great point of view and I know you’ll just love it!
I always knew I wanted to be a mom but I never really gave breastfeeding a thought. I had seen people do it but it wasn’t something I thought about. But being a good mom was. So when I became pregnant I grew to learn more about the world of breastfeeding. I grew to learn about nursing vs formula. Organic formula vs non. I began seeing that if you’re a good mom you breastfeed. If you don’t that must mean you don’t love your child as much. Well of course I would love my son. I WOULD be a good mom that had a natural unmediated birth and breastfed. No matter what. It became this obsession. An idol. And God doesn’t like idols. Having a natural birth and breastfeeding became mine. I was consumed. I watched all the videos. Learned all the positions to nurse. I was prepared. Fast forward to me 41 weeks pregnant with Atticus. At my 41 week appt. my doctor tells me he’s huge, I won’t be able to birth him naturally. I :must: have a c-section. I was in a devastated blur. I was not prepared for that. I had my big boy (9.6) the next morning. As c-sections go I had a great one. No complications. No scares. All the staff were as nice as possibly could be. But I wasn’t ok. I was scared to death. I thought I was dying. I felt humiliated laying on that table thinking that everyone else was seeing my son and I wasn’t even really involved in his birth just a vessel holding him. The next few weeks were so blurry. I was heavily medicated. Sad. Trying to feed this baby while not feeding myself enough. I thought how could I be a good mom when I couldn’t even birth this baby the way I was supposed to. I would lay on the couch barely drink a whole glass of water all day. Eat basically one tiny meal a day. It was not the best equation for making food for my baby. So after a day of Atticus having no wet diapers at all we gave him some formula we were sent home with from the hospital. At the time I was really annoyed. Like how dare they send me home with this?? I won’t need it. I felt so ashamed that I had to resort to formula. I know now there is no shame. I wasn’t taking care of myself but I made sure my baby was happy. Once we found the formula that worked for us he grew to happy chubby baby. But I still wanted to try again.
So when I became pregnant with our daughter I thought ok. Well maybe I can try to have a natural birth and nurse this time around. I wasn’t afraid either way. I didn’t want another c-section or to buy more formula but I knew if it was Gods plan he would give me the peace I needed if it didn’t go that way. I didn’t want to make it an idol. I had our baby girl on Mother’s Day this year. I had a natural unmedicated birth (not worth it! Get the epi!) and have been exclusively nursing Penelope since day one. It hasn’t been the easiest and there are days I want to quit so badly. But it’s so sweet and worth all the pain and blisters. Every roll on her body I put there. Every ounce she’s gained is from me. I have been her one source of nourishment since God wove her in my womb. That amazes me.
My relationship with my daughter is not better because of how she was born. I don’t love her more or am a better mother to her because I nurse her. Anyone that knows Atticus and I know we are two peas in a pod. He’s my mama’s boy. The journey I’ve been on with my children wasn’t just between us. It was Between God and me too. He was working on my heart. I had idols. He broke them down. I learned that to be a good mama isn’t anything with how or even if you birth your babies. It has nothing to do with how you feed them. It is putting God first. Giving up what you think is best and trusting he will do what he thinks is.
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
and before you were born I consecrated you;
I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”