As a young, naïve, soon-to-be mom of my firstborn, I didn’t like it when people asked if I was going to breastfeed. I never really understood or knew much about it. Quite honestly, I didn’t really care. I felt the same way with my second child. If anybody ever said anything to me about breastfeeding, I would always shut them off. The way I look at my body now is totally different than I did at that point in my life. Looking back on my first two kids, I sit here and think – how could I have been so selfish to have taken away one of the best, most priceless things I could have given my babies? I would often think about this before my third child was born. I always said if I was to have another baby, I was absolutely going to breastfeed, no ifs, ands, or buts about it. If the good Lord is willing and the creek don’t rise, it will happen.
We welcomed to the world our third little girl a few years after our second. I was never really one to put myself out there, especially when it was something that I was uncomfortable with in the first place. But, I remember like it was yesterday the lactation consultant coming into my room after I had my little girl and asking if I wanted help getting her latched. Normally I am very shy, especially when it comes to my body. That particular day, however, I wanted to breastfeed so badly I didn’t care if she looked, held, touched or did anything of the sort with my breast as long as my child was getting fed my breastmilk. It was a moment I will never forget.
I still have regrets to this day about not feeding my first two babies breastmilk. I was very naïve about everything and, in a sense, selfish. Being a mom changes you in ways that you could never imagine, and being selfish is not in the mom dictionary. Selfishness is turned into selfless. The amazing gift that I gave my third baby will not only be looked at as a way for me to feed her, but also as a life lesson for me. Knowledge is power, and power can change the world. It is an amazing feeling to give the gift of a lifetime, for a lifetime.