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Breastfeeding Success!! ~ Tara's Story
by Tara Smith

My husband and I took several classes while I was pregnant (infant illness, infant cpr, breastfeeding, care of newborn, etc). The best advice I ever got was at the breastfeeding class where they told us not to give up for at least two weeks. They said it would take a few weeks for the baby to get use to me and me used to the baby.

During my entire three day stay at the hospital, I never could get my daughter to nurse. She would latch on without any trouble, but then would begin screaming. I was beginning to feel like a failure, but I knew I couldn't give up for two weeks. We brought our daughter home and that afternoon, I could tell something was not right. She was hard to wake and lifeless. I immediately called the breastfeeding clinic in tears and said "I am giving up, I can't get her to eat." The nurse/lactation specialist was wonderful. She calmed me down and asked me "if I come to your house and try and help you, will you not give up until I get there?". I agreed.

She watched me, and I was doing everything correctly. We tried several different positions and had no luck. Finally, she went and got a nipple off one of the bottles we had, placed it over my breast and my daughter ate like never before. The next day she brought us a nipple shield (I guess they don't suggest this because it can decrease your milk supply, however I had plenty). From that day on until my daughter was 6 months old, the only way she would nurse was with the shield. Then around six months, she pulled it off and nursed without it.

I continued to nurse exclusively until we switched her to whole milk at 11 months. I worked full time from the time my daughter was 12 weeks old, pumping two times per day and nursing when I was home in the evenings and weekends. The best investment we ever purchased was the $200 medela dual/electric breast pump. This allowed for others besides myself to help with feedings (my husband in the middle of the night).

Best of luck to all of you new mothers or anyone planning to nurse. It was such a wonderful experience. My daughter is now 20 months, and I feel nursing has built such a strong bond between us.

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