This post is part of the Breastfeeding Blog Hop hosted by Life With Levi, The Slacker Mom and Diary of a Devil Dog Wife.
Hindsight bias is a bitch. Why is it so painfully easy to look back and see all the things that you could have done.. or should have done.. or might have done differently? Why do we tend to beat ourselves up inside while repeating these mantras? I should have... I could have.. I might have.. What if.. Guilt, hate, and depression like to ride along.
What we need to remember is that the reason that we are able to have these thoughts is because as humans we grow. We have new experiences as time passes. We learn new things that make us able to see what we should have done and could have done. It's so painful, though, when we see the easy answers that are so visible to us now and were so invisible to us then.
When Toddler B was born I was pretty ignorant about breastfeeding, although I didn't know it then. I had thumbed through a couple of books, met with a lactation consultant, and considered myself ready. What mom wastes her time reading up on what to expect when breastfeeding a special needs child? Who thinks that they will be exclusively pumping for months and months?
I don't hate myself for not preparing for having a special needs child. I do, however, occasionally guilt myself for one main thing: Not pumping past 6 months. I know, making it to six months is huge. But what if I had gone longer? Her little brain needed it, needs it now! Was I a wimp for giving up? I go back and forth between kicking myself and patting myself on the back for making it that far (especially since everyone around me save my partner and LC were telling me to give it up way earlier). I don't think that this feeling will ever go away. What if, what if, what if...
One thing that I wish I would have known about when Toddler B was born: the wealth of breastfeeding information and support available to me on the internet. It was all right there in front of me, and I never knew it! Blogs, support groups, information pages.. breastfeeding support galore. It could have have helped me so much, especially during those lonely and self-hating moments attached to the dreaded pump after being rejected by my baby once again.
Alas. At least I know now, and am in the position to be of help to other mamas around me. And that feels good.
Any favorite internet breastfeeding resources that you would recommend to other mamas?