Breastfeeding Series: Katherine of Somewhere in the Middle

This post is part of a series of posts from bloggers with babies who have breastfed. In honor of my journey of breastfeeding ending with my son, I asked five different bloggers to share their breastfeeding stories with us all. My hopes with this series is to share the differences in each woman’s experience. I also want to highlight the fact that not one of these mothers did the same thing in their breastfeeding journey and that all of their babies are beautiful and healthy. Moms— Do the best you can do for  you and your child. That is what counts! 
 
 

The Experience of Breastfeeding: Katherine and Rylee & Reese

by Katherine of Somewhere in the Middle
 
Hey there! I’m Katherine. First of all, thanks Jenni for asking me to be a part of your breastfeeding series! I blog over at Somewhere in the Middle. I have a slight obsession with coffee, making lists w/ check boxes and post-it notes. I’ve been married for 7 years to a guy I’ve known my entire life and who I’ve had a crush on since I was 14.I’m mama to two little girls; Rylee, 4 {and a half!, if you ask her} and Reese, 3 months. I never realized the journey breastfeeding would take me on…I’ve gone from one extreme to the next in regard to my feelings on breastfeeding my girls. I’ve loved it, I’ve hated it, I’ve wished it wouldn’t take so long, I’ve cherished the quiet time with my girls, etc etc. Bottom line, I’m thankful I’ve been able to maintain breastfeeding while working full time outside the home and even having to travel on occasion. 
1. Why did you decide to breast feed? To be honest, the main reason I set out to breastfeed was because of the money it would save us.
 

2. What was your biggest challenge with breast feeding? With my oldest, Rylee, we had latching issues pretty early on. She seemed to be doing great in the hospital, then our very first night home I couldn’t get her to latch on my right side. She went almost 12 hours without eating. At the same time, my milk was coming in with a vengeance, making it even harder each feeding for me to even try to get her to latch. Thankfully, the first thing the next morning we went straight to my OB’s office to meet with the lactation consultant. We determined I needed a nipple shield to help with Ry’s latch. I left that consultation with a brand new baby that was finally able to eat and a brand new breast pump, just in case. We were able to ditch the shield when she was about 4 months old.
With Reese, she had a little bit of a rough time latching on my right side as well, but we were able to work through that without the use of the shield. My biggest challenge with her was a painful latch between 1 & 2 weeks in. I would clinch my jaw, dig my feet into the ground and ball up my hands into fists every single time she started to nurse.
Traveling for work while breastfeeding always presented its own challenge as well. I’ve navigated pumping in some pretty crazy places like airport restrooms, porta-potties at events and most recently a bathroom stall at a NASCAR race. There’s just something about going through airport security with 100+ ounces of breast milk that’s always fun. 
3. What was your greatest breast feeding moment? Hands down, my greatest breastfeeding moment to date just happened last week. I’ve been blessed with an abundant milk supply and had an ever-growing freezer supply so I decided to donate nearly all of my freezer supply to a mama that’s been struggling with producing milk and her 3 week old baby.
4. Did you solely breast feed? Supplement with formula or solid food? Kind of a funny story…when Rylee was 11 months old she pretty much turned up her nose at the boob. She was done. I kind of freaked out. Between continuing to pump and my freezer stash she continued with only breast milk for about 2 more weeks. When all that was gone & my supply had dried up, 2 weeks before her first birthday, we bought her formula and gave that to her until she turned 1. Hindsight? She would have been fine going straight to cow’s milk, but I was so concerned that all the books said to wait until 1 year.
So far with Reese we’ve been solely breast milk.
5. At what age did you introduce solids? Any tips you can give mommies? We started Rylee on solids just after she was 6 months old. We started with barley cereal, mixed with breast milk. I’m thinking we’ll do the same thing with Reese. As far as tips go? Well, I’ll be asking for them for Reese! It’s been 4 years since we’ve done this! Haha.
I did really like the book “Super Baby Food”. I’ll probably reference that as we start to think about introducing solids to Reese.
6. Did you have a breast feeding goal? My goal for breastfeeding has always been just to do it as long as made sense/I was able to. Ultimately, in the back of my mind I had the one year mark as my goal, but I also knew that sometimes things don’t work out quite like I may have planned and I didn’t want to get down on myself if it didn’t work out.
7. Have you weaned? If so, how did you go about it? I mentioned earlier that Rylee weaned herself at 11 months. No matter how many times I offered to nurse her, she wanted nothing to do with it. 
And right now, Reese is so little I don’t even want to think about her weaning. I’d like to just stop time right now, thankyouverymuch.  But seriously, if she doesn’t wean herself like her older sister did, I’ll probably start slowly cutting out nursing sessions starting when she’s about a year old.
8. Any tips for mommies out there thinking about breast feeding? I guess my best tip would be, just give it a shot. It may not be easy. It doesn’t come naturally to everyone and that’s ok. Parenting is tough stuff. Sometimes breastfeeding is awesome. Sometimes it’s not. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you struggle with it. It’s perfectly normal. Bottom line is this: you need to do what’s best for you and your baby and only you can determine what “right” is.
 
 

 

Thank you so much to Katherine for sharing her breastfeeding experience and being part of the “experience of breast feeding” post series! Please leave Katherine your love in the comments section! 

I’m linking this post up in these parties: 

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