What Mothers Who Breastfeed Have to Say

I had a difficult time in the beginning. It seemed impossible to establish a breastfeeding relationship with my baby. With a lot of support from a lactation consultant, I was able to make it work. I found the health benefits of breastfeeding to be tremendous. William has such a strong immune system and is rarely sick.

I had to make it work, it felt instinctual. It was a protective feeling like a mother bear with her baby cub. It bonded us in a very special way and gave him a sense of security, a home base. No matter what happened he could always be comforted by the breast.

--Wendy, mother of William, 18 Months

Sometimes, I imagine the future sense memories I am creating by smoothing lavender or some other good-smelling oil on my skin and nursing my baby warm at my side. What are the benefits of providing peace and profound comfort during your baby’s first hours out of the womb and the first year or more of life? What is the value of nursing him through an illness, his trusting eyes staring up into yours? Is it harder? Sometimes. Knowing my breast milk would promote better health in my child was my motivation to persevere, with the help of an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant, through an extremely difficult start. Is it easier? Often. No warming, no mixing, no missing ingredients -- just what nature intended. Doctors and researchers speak of other benefits: higher IQs for my sons, reduced risk of breast cancer for me. In time they will discover more benefits. Meanwhile, my investment lives on in our closeness.

--Melissa, mother of Moses, 3 years, 8 months, and Ezra, 14 months

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