World Breastfeeding Week is a campaign celebrated every year across the world from August 1 — August 7. This initiative aims to raise awareness of the importance of breastfeeding, considered by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a crucial element in the development of a child up to the age of two.
While everyone has the right to make their own decision, the worldwide campaign was launched following a surge in infant mortality due to a drop in the number of mothers who wanted to breastfeed. As a company that celebrates motherhood in all its forms, we have asked our community to share their breastfeeding and bottle-feeding stories, in an attempt to make everyone feel more included as well as raise awareness of the different journeys that mothers are on.
Real stories from mums
We start with a story of misdiagnosis from Rebecca:
“I attempted to breastfeed my son (now 2.5 years) but was misdiagnosed with mastitis when I actually had a 30cm cyst blocking milk supply. This was drained 3 times and later I had surgery. The pain was unbearable, and I was then unable to feed, pump or even hold my newborn without crying. The surgery was left open to heal, meaning constant cleaning and packing by nursery (also agony). Fast forward, I have a 10-week-old baby girl who I exclusively breastfed for a little over a month with less milk in my breasts. I’m proud of my body, my daughter, and myself for trying regardless of what the doctors said to me. If she didn’t have any allergy issues, I’d still be trying!”
From the account @hough_thewildones:
“No instant skin to skin, tube feeding, exclusively pumping 4hrly, tongue tie, failure to thrive, colic, GERD diagnosis. And the allergies to CMPA, dairy, soya & egg. But we’re now thriving big boy and he’s doing so well and reaching milestones in his own time. We did 14 months in total and cherished every minute.”
Laura confesses: “I did not breastfeed for the first 2 but I am breastfeeding the 3rd, the hospital let me suffer and did not help with breastfeeding” and Carry proudly admits: “I didn't feel like it for my first 2, and I have no regrets.”
Sometimes you know what you want, and other times you let fate decide for you, just like Marie:
“I didn't know if I wanted to breastfeed when I was pregnant... Then I did the welcome feed, and it was a revelation! My Cézanne loved it and so did I... We've been having our moments together for almost 4 months now.”
At other times, things can get difficult, and Nana knows this well:
“My desire to have a second child was immense, as well as my desire to breastfeed. It’s magical.️ On the first day, my baby struggled to learn to suckle and I was exhausted from the birth. It was a very difficult first day, but it got better and better, besides the time I got sore and cracked nipples. Breastfeeding was painful, but I didn't want to give up on it. I gave her a few bottles of formula milk so I could rest my breasts, and I was crying at the same time. My heart broke every time she had a bottle. This only lasted two days and then I stopped bottle feeding. It was such a mistake, I learned that you should never stop breastfeeding because of this, and rather the opposite, you should continue until it heals. Today, I am still breastfeeding after 7 months.”
Marion gives us hope with her story of strength and perseverance:
“My breastfeeding journey was full of pitfalls: no milk supply for 10 days, cracks galore, Milk Ejection Reflex, and hyperlactation, baby in hyperextension, it's been 6 months and we're holding on. It was the best feeling ever if you take away the pain. To know that my body and my mind are creating food for my son is magical.”
Likewise, another mum reminds us that being resilient is key:
“When breastfeeding my eldest, I developed an abscess at 15 days. I surrounded myself with the right people and I succeeded in breastfeeding for another 9 months. With my second child, I developed mastitis after 15 days. Once again, with the support of people around me, I’m still going strong, breastfeeding in my 7th month. The secret (for me) is that breastfeeding is not an innate skill, most likely it will be challenging at times, but what counts is to be surrounded by people that support you and your choices.”
“pure magic - the most beautiful experience - mutual dependence - the most natural thing ever” are some of the words used to describe the experience of some breastfeeding enthusiasts.
“3 years, 1 month and 8 days. Very high demand baby girl! Extremely hard. But that bond that gets created is incomparable.” - Noelia
“3 babies, 3 breastfeeds, the last one still ongoing. One word: powerful!!!!” - Amelie
Last but not least, Mariée success story:
“A difficult start to breastfeeding my eldest but it lasted more than 4 years ️ and an easier one for my second baby”.
These are some of the stories shared by the mums of our community. Can you relate to any of them? Did you breastfeed or bottle feed your kids? Join our community by sharing your unique story with us and remember that no matter what you decide, it is your own choice!