Jessica's Breastfeeding Story

My breastfeeding journey started long before I ever even became pregnant! Mine actually started when I was just 12 years old and my baby brother was born. I watched my mom struggle nursing through severe mouth ties, mastitis and eventually just nursing on one breast for TWO YEARS! I didn't know it then, but this journey with her would stick with me through my own pregnancy and nursing journey. 

When I first found out I was pregnant, it was never a question as to whether or not I would be breastfeeding. Someone would ask and the answer, without hesitation, was always "YES!" As my due date drew near I became more excited to finally be able to nurse my little one. I did lots of research and attended any class I could. I was very thankful to have my partner by my side to support me! Even now, he is wonderful! 

 Jessica and her nursling

Jessica and her nursling

My son was born on April 25, 2013! He immediately started rooting and attempting to latch, I was ecstatic! But soon, those wonderful feelings of getting to nurse turned into severe pain accompanied by bleeding and cracked nipples. I begged for someone to send in the lactation consultant and when she came initially she said all was fine. As the pain and bleeding continued she came back in, looked at my little man's mouth and apologize profusely for missing his lip and tongue ties. She advised me to see his pediatrician right away to see about getting them corrected.

At two days old we received our initial referral for an ear, nose and throat specialist (ENT). at 10 days old she clipped what she could. She told us his tongue tie was one she has never seen before, it was very short and very thick (which we found later to be called posterior tongue tie). She also stated lip ties need no revision. I continued nursing and continued crying with every latch. I refused to give up! We went to LLL meetings, we met with several LC's and everyone said his latch LOOKED good....but it sure didn't feel good. He never had trouble gaining weight so everyone just brushed it off. FINALLY, at 10 months old, yeah 10 months of painful nursing, someone listened. We met with a wonderful pediatric dentist who was willing to listen to me and look, REALLY look, and watch. Sure enough, his tongue and lip ties were still a huge issue. The dentist did laser revision in office and now, at 26 months, we are still nursing strong! I am thankful for the wonderful support system I have at home and in my community. Without them I am not sure I would've made it this far.