"Oh, you gonna let it all hang out?"

It's the Breastfeeding Blog Hop!

You can get all the details on how to join in by visiting Jen at Life With Levi! While you're at it, take come time to check out her fun mama blog!

This weeks topic is...
 Breastfeeding Body Changes

When my son PJ was born and I began my journey into breastfeeding, I didn't take into consideration the changes, if any, that I would see in my own body. I just wanted to get this kid fed! I figured fleetingly that I would nurse for a year, lose 20 lbs within a month from all those calories I would burn, and still have firm, perky breastestes!

Oh, did you hear that thud? That was me. Falling back to earth.

Breastfeeding is kind of a big deal. Your body is producing a substance that keeps another human being alive! It's much more complex then when my body is firing synapses to absorb this weeks episode of Gossip Girl. With all of that body complexity, it's to be expected that there will be body change.

I nursed my son for 19 months- in fact, we have fully weaned and he's no longer nursing as of two days ago (waaaaaahhhhh!!!!). In that time, the size and shape of my breasts changed dramatically! Pre-pregnancy, I was a relatively average C cup, with very little change during the pregnancy itself. When PJ was born and my milk came in -WHAM!- I grew some BIG OL' TITTAYS! They. Were. Huge. And they were hard! They were super sore and just full of weirdness in general. Thankfully, as PJ and I got into a groove with nursing, all of the weirdness settled down. My breasts were soft to the touch again and they didn't hurt.

My breasts have certainly lost some of their pre-pregnancy fullness and firmness. My tummy is also softer and my feet got wider. Things change when you have a baby- I don't know how Michelle Duggar hasn't completely fallen apart (have I ever mentioned that I lovelovelove the Duggars? Seriously.)! I guess it's because that when these changes come with your own child, it's not such a biggie. The outward changes in my body (although I could be much more fit) don't bother me in the slightest.

Inside, my body went through changes, too. My period returned quickly, when PJ was only 3 months old and still exclusively nursing (WTF!!!). I was NOT happy about that change, since I truly loved not getting my period, but come it did and there was little I could do except be thankful it didn't affect my supply. Pre-pregnancy my menstrual cycle was ridiculously regular- every 28 days by the clock! Since it's triumphant return, it's been a bit less regular, sometimes coming early, sometimes a day or two late. I have less cramping with my periods which is wonderful, but also feel a little more cranky then I used to, so I guess it's a wash. With PJ being fully weaned now (waaaaahhhh!!!!) I wonder if there will be more changes as my body gets used to not producing breast milk again.

Right now, the biggest change is in my little mama brain and my giant mama heart as I deal with PJ being weaned! It's been an emotional time for me. I know that much of that is brought on by the weaning itself and that it's physical, but I truly enjoyed nursing my son. It was the only thing in the world that only I could do for him, and it was a promise of some Mama/PJ time, every single day for just over 19 months. PJ weaned himself, he had truly lost interest in nursing, and it's both exciting to see my son become such a big, independent boy and sad to really say goodbye to PJ the infant.

Sore boobs, squirting milk accidents, bigger feet, smooshy fun bags- I'll take it all! It's my breastfeeding badge of honor!


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Milk and Whimsy said...

Wow. Kudos to you for breastfeeding a baby until he was self-weaned. That is wonderful. I wish you the best as you deal with the emotional aspects of weaning. I'm nursing my first, and I can't imagine weaning her. It must be so hard. Maybe try to schedule in lots of regular snuggle times!

www.SoooBig.com said...

19 Months! Go, you! That's wonderful. We're currently at 10.5 and going strong.

And btw - the way that you are spelling TITTAYS made me laugh out loud!!!

Jenn said...

As always, your posts make me laugh so hard! I know how you feel about no longer breastfeeding. Chuck stopped being interested in nursing about 3 days after his first birthday. I felt like a dirty perv shoving my boobs in his face going "come on, you know you want it". I really thought he would want to nurse longer. I'm also sad that I'm now back down to my boring little a-b cups, and passing my c & d cup bras on to my almost 12 year old daughter!