It had been two days of being bitten by my daughter every time I tried to feed her. She is eleven months old and teething. Needless to say, there have been lots of tears (from the two of us).
Admittedly I also felt a tinge of ‘mom guilt’ as this started happening the day after I left her at night for the first time ever (only for a couple of hours!)
Although she was left in the most loving arms (her Grandmother) I still thought to myself – ‘is this my punishment for leaving her, and is this the end of our breastfeeding journey?’
I called my mom in tears and seeking advice. Luckily my mother is a breastfeeding advocate – she gave me advice and calmed me down. She suggested I call the local La Leche League and so I did. I got great advice and reassuring words about teething from one of the members!
I am reminded that even at 30 I will always be my mother’s baby…
I told myself to ‘breath and trust in your baby’
Finally, the next afternoon the biting seemed to slow down – but I still hesitantly put my nipple in her mouth like I was dipping my foot into a shark tank! ‘Breath and trust in your baby’ I told myself. So, I took her outside to enjoy the fresh South African North Western Provence air… and then the most wonderful thing happened!
Finally, the next afternoon the biting seemed to slow down – but I still hesitantly put my nipple in her mouth like I was dipping my foot into a shark tank!
A mama monkey began to breastfeed her baby right in front of us
A mother monkey appeared opposite me on the grass. Nestled into her bosom was her baby. Then, beautifully and naturally, her baby started breastfeeding too! I was in awe and full of joy as I sat with her feeding my daughter.
In that moment I was reminded of the fact that we are all animals and trusting my instinct in a world that tells you ‘how to’, is – for me – innate, just as she, the mother monkey was doing.