I was never blessed with breasts. After having two children and successfully breastfeeding them both for six months, I decided to have breast augmentation. My ex-husband didn’t want any more children so it was the perfect time. Eight years later and divorced, my partner and I are expecting! My mind quickly turned to breastfeeding…
I really didn’t think breastfeeding would be possible after having a boob job
My first thoughts were oh no, I’m not going to be able to breastfeed. I scoured the Internet reading any information I could find about breastfeeding after a boob job. Some say you can, others say you can’t. The overall advice… just wait and see.
George was born 10/11/2021. Due to ill mental health, I was induced. He was born at 37+6 a healthy 7lbs 7oz. Unfortunately, he had complications and was admitted to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
Due to ill mental health, I was induced.
My midwife was amazing. She let me have that precious moment of holding my newborn baby. ‘The golden hour’. That all-important time to establish breastfeeding.
My son was grunting and all of a sudden he was taken away
Something wasn’t right. My midwife had called the doctor in. George was grunting, which to my partner and I sounded like a cute little noise that made us smile. Turns out it was a sign he was struggling to breathe.
My golden hour was cut to just minutes. George was whisked to NICU and my partner went with him. I’m left alone. Clueless. Heartbroken. Anxious. A nurse comes into my room and kindly explains that George is very poorly. He was started on CPAP to help with his breathing.
By the time I got over to NICU the neonatal consul told me she had to intubated George. My heart sank and the tears flooded my cheeks. In this whirlwind, time stopped. I sat next to my tiny newborn as he lay attached to so many wires and machines. Tiny cannulas in his tiny veins. A feeding tube through his nose. Wait… a feeding tube? That cemented the decision that I definitely wouldn’t be feeding him.
The nurses encouraged me to hand express
I was asked to collect my colostrum. ‘Liquid gold’ as it’s known to the nurses. I burst into tears and said ‘I can’t. I’ve had a boob job’. The nurse advised me on how to hand express and encouraged me to try.
I was asked to collect my colostrum. ‘Liquid gold’ as it’s known to the nurses. I burst into tears and said ‘I can’t. I’ve had a boob job’.
So, my partner Sam and I took the 1ml syringe off to our room and tried to express. I massaged my breasts and within a few squeezes there it was! A thick yellow drip of liquid gold. I squealed in excitement whilst Sam carefully collected it into the syringe. I was so excited. We kept going until we had just under 1ml.
I remember being elated. I was hoping that if I did it again in 2 hours time the same would happen. For the next 2 days I hand expressed colostrum and collected the tiny droplets into the 1ml syringes. The nurses were so encouraging. They made me feel like superwoman!
Eventually I was able to try George at the breast
The tiny amounts of colostrum were given to George through a feeding tube. That was my next obstacle. How could I breastfeed whilst he had a feeding tube? After around 2-3 days the nurse asked if I wanted to try and put George to the breast. I excitedly jumped at the chance! We tried several times to no avail. I felt like a failure. I was so disheartened. Sam and the nurses cheered me on and encouraged me to try again later.
All I kept thinking was it’s my fault. I have implants. It must be them. I’m not holding him right, it must be me. When in reality it was a mixture of things that weren’t my fault.
One day we visited George and put him to the breast. We had some lovely skin-to-skin cuddles and bam! He pulled out his feeding tube. I was mortified but the nurse just laughed and said “maybe it’s time to feed mummy”. So, I set myself into the chair and brought him to the breast. He latched! I got that tingly feeling of my milk coming down and then I heard the sound of him swallowing. I’m doing it! It’s happening. I was elated. Breastfeeding after a boob job, it is possible!
I’m really hoping we make it to six months
It hasn’t been all plain sailing since then though. After a few attempts at feeding I knew something didn’t feel right. His mouth wasn’t wide enough and I was feeling pain. The thoughts of self-doubt kicked in again. Turns out he had a tongue tie. We took him to see a private practitioner who sorted it in minutes.
Here we are months weeks later and still going strong. After all the stress, anxiety, and doubt around feeding… I’m doing it. There were a few hurdles to jump but we made it. I would like to get to six months again so wish me luck!
After all the stress, anxiety, and doubt around feeding… I’m doing it. There were a few hurdles to jump but we made it.
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