Anyway, lately a few new opportunities have presented themselves for me, and I'm a little torn. In the upcoming months I have the chance to play soccer again, and also the potential to earn a decent amount of money by coaching again. Both of these are harder to do when breastfeeding. See, I've decided now that I have developed a love-hate relationship with breastfeeding. I think there are actually more things in the "hate" category, but the quality of things in the "love" side makes it still worthwhile. And to be fair, it's not really "hate" per se, more like sort of dislike/annoying. Riley is still exclusively breastfed, and my goal is to make it to 6 months, then re-evaluate once we get there. But anyway, on to the loves and hates...
- Leaking boobies, which necessitates wearing breast pads 24/7, and doing laundry more frequently. Oh yeah, and which causes some embarrassing public situations...
- Having to constantly wear specific, breastfeeding-friendly clothes/bras. No more t-shirts and sweatshirts!!
- Engorgement. Even if Riley sleeps 5 or 6 hours, I wake up in pain basically waiting for her to wake up to feed.
- Trying to rush/plan outings in between feedings
- Feeding in public. It's challenging for me! Riley is squirmy, and LOUD, and I need to be able to see her while I'm feeding her, which makes it tough to be discrete.
- Oversupply. Too much milk = a mess!
- Not being able to sleep on my stomach still.
- Pain! Feedings don't hurt at all, but my boobs are just always a little sore feeling when full of milk.
- The complications with exercise. As in, it's painful to run/work out, and I can only do it right after I feed AND pump out all the milk... but then my supply increases for the next day, which is extra annoying! And don't get me started with trying to play soccer...I might not even be able to play in this upcoming season if I want to keep breastfeeding.
- My inability to leave Riley for an extended period without bringing a breast pump.
- That I will probably feel really guilty if/when I decide to stop breastfeeding.
- That I am providing the healthiest, best food for my baby.
- That I was able to make it work when so many people have such a hard time.
- That I don't have to hassle with prepping and cleaning bottles all day. Also means Riley never has to wait for food.
- It's free! Formula is expensive.
- I don't have to get out of bed in the middle of the night. Well, that's not entirely true, but I don't have to go to the kitchen to prep a bottle.
- The bonding. Breastfeeding is so incredibly intimate, and I love that aspect of it the most.
- Availability. Food is ready and available anywhere, anytime. I think I've already said this one like 3 times.