Vanessa Grimaldi is getting real about her postpartum experience.
Over the weekend, the 35-year-old “Bachelor” alum took to Instagram to open up about her “breastfeeding journey” with her 716,000 followers.
In the post, the Canadian reality star shared a photo of her breastfeeding her seven month old son, Winston, alongside text that explained her newborn was having troubles latching.
“When I prepared my hospital bag, I didn’t pack any formula because I thought, ‘he’s going to latch.’ It seemed so effortless from what I saw on Instagram…Unfortunately Winston didn’t latch. I was barely producing,” she said. “And I was exhausted and traumatized from my emergency C-section which nurses told me might play a role on my production level. So on formula he went while I pumped barely anything throughout the day. For weeks. Basically to this day. But, I didn’t lose hope.”
Eventually, Grimaldi hired a private lactation consultant who showed her the “football hold” and helped her use a nipple shield. With this help, Winston finally latched.
Grimaldi went on to explain that she began a pumping schedule “every three hours during the day and four at night. Then stress pumping every two hours during the day and three at night.”
However, a week after Winston’s birth, Grimaldi’s grandfather passed away, causing her “more emotional distress,” “more sleepless nights,” and “less time to work on his latch.”
The problems only continued — shortly after, Winston was diagnosed with torticollis, meaning he was unable to turn his head to the right since birth. But with treatment, he started to show progress.
Progress also came in the form of feeding. Grimaldi revealed that earlier this month, her baby latched without a nipple shield for the first time.
At the end of her post, the mother-of-one revealed the reason she wanted to open up about this “emotional” experience.
“I was so naive at first. I thought it was going to be easy peasy lemon squeezy. It wasn’t. It isn’t. But we are slowly making progress…For now, this is what’s working and I’m happy with the progress we’ve made,” she explained.
Grimaldi also gave “all the mommas and soon to be mommas” a motivational message.
“I just want to say good freaking job!” she concluded. “And I want to reiterate, whether you are formula feeding or breastfeeding or combining both, you are doing amazing! Your baby is so lucky to have you as their momma!”
In the caption, the TV star revealed her fear of “getting mommy shamed” for originally being unable to breastfeed.
“The most emotional journey = breastfeeding journey…I wasn’t sure if I wanted to share this in fear of being judged or getting mommy shamed (can’t believe it’s actually a thing) but this was the kind of post I wish I had read before giving birth,” she penned.
Grimaldi added that she hopes her story can inspire mothers to keep pushing forward.
“If you choose/are able to breastfeed, I hope my story gives you hope,” she said. “FYI Winston is mainly formula fed, so if you’re formula feeding and that works for you and your baby, that’s amazing! Formula or breastmilk, you do you, boo!”
In the comments, fans thanked Grimaldi for her “honest” and “real” look at motherhood.
“Love you for sharing this. It’s not easy at all, and thanks for your real posts,” commented a follower.
“Congrats for not giving up! I love how honest you are and I know this will help mothers everywhere,” shared someone else.
This article was first published here. You can read the original article in full here.