Trusting My Body

My baby has always been a lousy sleeper, but lately he’s been waking up every 45 minutes. All night long. My husband and I are basically zombies.

Look at this dimpled baby! He's getting just what he needs. Now, I just need to remember that!

Look at this dimpled baby! He’s getting just what he needs. Now, I just need to remember that!

On one of these horrible nights, my husband hollered, “I think he needs formula! He must be hungry and not getting enough milk!”

Now, my husband is ordinarily very supportive. I assure you, these words came from a place of not knowing and from exhaustion. But still! It got to my head because I had supply issues with my first son and I don’t think I’ve ever really recovered from the feelings of sadness at not providing enough food for him on my own.

Nursing this baby has so far been very empowering, because I’ve had so much milk and he’s gained so much weight. I watch him nurse every time, checking for the tell-tale ear moving or clicking sounds to indicate hearty swallows. I also notice a spraying stream of milk whenever he pops off to look around. He’s a chunky little cherub. He just doesn’t sleep very well…

But, to put my mind at ease, I made an appointment with our pediatrician to talk about Felix’s weight gain and my milk supply. The conversation was quickly kiboshed when we plunked him on the scale.

He’d gained 24 ounces in 6 weeks.


So, it seems he was hungry, but also getting the food he needed to support this crazy, 10-month growth spurt. I think I experienced a let-down, I was so relieved to get assurance my body was functioning just fine.

Of course, I can talk about feeling relieved and make light of this situation, but truthfully I do carry around a lot of tension thanks to my first nursing experience. I’ve never known what it was like to exclusively breastfeed a baby and so now that I’m doing it, I can’t quite trust that it’s really happening. Nursing makes me feel more emotionally vulnerable than anything else ever has, and I’m a sensitive lady.

So my take-away is to feel proud about this achievement and remind myself of this awesome weight gain the next time I’m feeling worried.

Have you struggled to trust your body while you were nursing? Leave us a comment to share your experience.

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