Thursday, May 26, 2011


This is the first post in a series on "PARENTS LIVING UNDER DIFFICULTIES"
Part 1  ~  "Being the Main Parent".
The parent author of this post wishes to stay anonymous.

"We have one beautiful child. We planned to have him and we were ready in our marriage to take the big leap into parenthood. We spoke excitedly about parenting ideas, names and the challenges that lay ahead, but I didn't foresee the biggest challenge of them all. As the due date got closer my partner's mental health issues began to worsen. We thought we had it under control, but by the time our beautiful boy was three months old the illness was raging seemingly out of control. And so reluctantly I became the main parent, and in time, the only parent living in the house.
Initially the hardest bit about parenting solo was that I had never thought that through. I hadn't thought about how to take care of myself when I had a child all the time without anyone to 'tag team' with. Then the bitterness set in. I was angry with my partner for being sick and not able to live up to our expectations of parenthood, that I was almost unable to engage with our son because I had difficulty controlling my own emotions.
Time ticked on. I swallowed my pride and sense of independence and started asking for help....and more importantly accepting it. This is my most important lesson - allowing others to be part of my life and to help. I found this particularly hard because our family don't live very close and on both sides our parents are still working, and so unable to offer regular time to have our son. Thus, my main help came from non-family members.
The crisis point of the illness has passed, yet I continue to be the main parent. The ongoing nature of being the solo parent is exhausting. I survive by finding people who I can talk through parenting issues with. I thrive when I talk with my trustworthy friends and vent about the overwhelming sense of responsibility and the feeling that I am never able to fully rest, that I'm always 'on the clock'. I thrive when I take time out for me, to read, garden, engage intellectually with the world around me and generally take care of the person God made me to be. I thrive when I remember that I need to have different expectations of myself as a parent in this circumstance, and be forgiving and patient with me.
There are many challenges in parenting in general, but there are a few that I think are specific to situations like mine - I'll list just a few.
  *  Making decisions about my son without someone who is equally invested.
  *  Helping my son understand what is happening with my partner.
  *  Staying positive to our son about my partner.
  *  Accepting help - so humbling and hard at times.
  *  Including my partner in discussions about parenting and how to take on board my partner's 
      suggestions about our child, whilst knowing that it's up to me to implement them and to 
      enforce them.
  *  The challenge of the irregular nature of my partner's involvement.
  *  My son does find it hard to rely on my partner, to know when he will see this parent and how 
      much is expected when they are around. That gives me so much sadness.
  *  Socially it can be hard because I'm mum and dad filler....and there are lots of events that 
      expect a certain gendered parent to be involved in certain activities (I find it best with this one
      to jump in gung-ho as if I didn't notice.)

There is, however great gains in being the main parent also. Consistency is easier because it's just me. Planning events - I can selfishly choose the things I like most. Special time with our son - I love getting so much special time with him while he is young. I love that he snuggles with me, seeks me out and that we know each other so well.

When and if my days of being the main parent end, I will have learnt a lot of things, in particular, how to give myself time so that I can take care of my son and do the best job possible, which is what I want to do. I have also been made aware of the different strengths that others can bring to our child, and the joy that both he and they receive from sharing life together. I have realised that a child does need a whole community of people around them, regardless of their home situation, and that finding safe, kind people to fill his life with is a blessing for all of us.

THISWEEKWITHTHEKIDS ~ if you have a friend in a similar situation, you could offer to "borrow" their child for the day or take your friend and child out for a fun day away from home so both can have an exciting, exhilarating and stimulating or relaxing and refreshing break. You will probably all have such a happy time that it'll become a regular get together.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


"Waiting for my dear friend, I thought about how my experiences had given me a stronger sense of myself. I had been gradually stripping away the extraneous things that I'd pinned to my life in Melbourne - all the unthinking routines and urban distractions. I was surprised by what was revealed underneath. Knowing what really mattered to me inspired a confidence I'd never felt before. I thought about how our children had become far more confident, too. I had such admiration for their diligence and perseverance in overcoming the frustrations of learning a new language to make new friends. To see a child branch out in a strange new world, despite the obvious constraints of language and culture, is the stuff that makes a parent's heart sing. I reflected that at Bosgouet each of us had found a new incarnation, a little bit of ourselves that we would not have known existed if we hadn't taken this opportunity."
Jane Webster : "AT MT FRENCH TABLE" page 220.

The book "At My French Table", is a feast for the eyes with its photography, a feast for the stomach with its gastronomical delights described and shared through recipes, and a feast of thoughts to meuse on. The author, Jane Webster, takes her family from a yuppy Melbourne suburban lifestyle to a culture and history rich rural existence in Normandy, France, filled with continual new challenges. 
In Normandy, Jane discovered and admitted  the things she had "pinned" to her life to be "extraneous", "unthinking routines and urban distractions."  Life often happens to us, opportunities present themselves and we are taken along before we have chosen to be committed. Do you think on your lifestyle choices regularly? It's healthy to do so. I find our annual two weeks basic camping in a farmer's paddock with four beaches minutes away, to be the ideal atmosphere to both recharge and rethink lifestyle.
Life for Jane in Normandy, with its tough challenges had "inspired a confidence I'd never felt before", said Jane. That's great, but something better was to come ~ Jane's new-found confidence had influenced her children in their "confidence", "diligence and perseverance in overcoming the frustration of learning a new language to make new friends .... branch out in a strange new world..."
In a discussion the other night with a group of friends we talked about how parents lives influence their children's lives. Charlotte Mason's writings on the subject got us started. She showed us a process.
Firstly, one is "struck by an idea". In Jane's case, smitten with French cuisine and culture and her personal love for cooking, she was struck by the French "reverential" treatment of food. She says, it "made me feel as if I'd come home." Here was the idea, the attraction, the "something that had lain so deep in me for so long." ~ French-style cooking.
Charlotte's second  step is "intention", acquiring more knowledge about the idea. This began for Jane on her return to Melbourne after her honeymoon in France in 1990. She busied herself studying French cookery under a multitude of chefs, and trialled her cooking skills on friends. This led to her resigning from her teaching job and opening a small cafe. The intention part of the process isn't always as clear as it was for Jane, but as Charlotte Mason says, "it is strong enough to move one to action; to find the things and get the knowledge". This gathering of knowledge and experience develops and affects the thoughts, opinions and behavior of a person.
The third stage is "purpose" or conviction to keep at it, "embracing the idea". In Jane's life the years passed, four children were born into the Webster family and all the while the passion for the next trip to France preoccupied Jane. Then her "eureke moment; I could run culinary tours combined with hands-on cooking classes". What an idea. As she talked to her husband Pete and each of her children, the plan met with positive responses.
The fourth and final phase is "resolution". The difficulties to achieve the goal and purpose are faced and as each is solved ones resolution to keep-at-it is strengthened. Jane's determination brought her confidence which influenced the growing confidence in her children's lives. Charlotte Mason describes it as "there is a certain largeness in (Jane's) opinions and in (her) conduct of life. (She) has an uplifting effect on (her children). (She) helps them to see matters from other than their personal ... standpoint ... carrying with them the spacious thoughts, the impersonal aims, they got from their (mother)... the stages of purpose and resolution ... were there, because the fruit of that first seed-thougt perfected itself in (her) life, and it continued to bear in the lives of (her children)." Seeing the "first" in her children's lives, Jane described it as "the stuff that makes a parent's heart sing."

Jane Webster ~ the stuff that makes a parent's heart sing.

The second post I wrote was on the topic Parents Have the Biggest Influence on Their Children. You may like to read it and be encouraged.

THISWEEKWITHTHEKIDS ~ start by spending some time thinking about your lifestyle. Is it clogged and cluttered? You don't need to travel to another country, as Jane Webster did, to change things. Begin by pursuing any thought or idea you had as you read Jane's story. You possibly already have an idea you've been "struck by". Follow that idea using the clues to develop it into action that Charlotte Mason gave. You're on the way to becoming an inspirational example for your children and sharing the pleasure Jane speaks of "that makes a parent's heart sing."

Saturday, May 14, 2011


"And yes, while it might not start out feeling very natural, with time, for most mothers, it becomes beautiful. Although perseverance can seem an anomaly in this fast-paced world, you'll never hear a woman still breastfeeding past six months complain about how hard it is."
Megan Nicol Reed : "The Agony and the Ecstasy".  Sunday Star-Times  April 3 2011.

As the quote above from Megan Nicol Reed, says, starting breastfeeding with your newborn baby, is a wonder and art.

This is the fourth and final part in the series on Breastfeeding, and I return to sharing Margaret McGlashan's knowledge with you.

6. Give us a simple run-down on how a mum should prepares herself before the birth if she wants to breastfeed her baby.
Mums need a good diet - good food and good drink. 
Both mum and baby do best if mum has a good mindset in preparation for a natural delivery. Before your baby arrives get your house organized and in order then you will be able to give attention to your baby. 
Don't fall into the trap of doing too much intellectual planning and preparation for the birth, this only leads to you 'labouring intellectually' or as the book says. Mums approaching birth in this manner don't have the success, freedom, confidence or satisfaction that mothers have who turn into the situation, following their instincts - the lead or cues their own body gives.
Being able to breastfeed is one of the natural functions of a mother's body 
    ~ her body is able to conceive the baby on its own
    ~ her body is able to 'grow' the baby on its own
    ~ her body is able to birth the baby on its own
    ~ her body is able to feed the baby on its own.

7. Can you talk us through how you teach mums to breastfeed, from the start?
At a good birth once your baby is born, it will be put onto your chest or abdomen - this is called skin-to-skin and this close contact helps your baby adjust to its new life outside you. Staying skin-to-skin, even up to two hours, is good for giving warmth to the baby and reassuring them you are close.
In the first 3 - 4 minutes after birth the hormone oxytocin is released within the mother's body. This is a natural process that the body performs. Oxytocin helps the placenta to separate and triggers a mum's breast milk to come in over the following days. For this hormone to be successfully released in this small window of time, there needs to be quietness as the baby births and over the following minutes until the placenta is also birthed. Birth is not over until the placenta is born. Noise, along with with drug induced births, suppress the release of oxytocin. These two factors are contributors to postnatal depression in mothers. (Possibly more in a later post). 
To understand the importance of quietness at the time of birth I want you to think of when you are in the moment of intimate sex with your partner. If someone suddenly rushes into the room, phone bleeping, asking if you want takeaways, your sexual experience is ruined. This is the effect of noise, conversations, mobiles bleeping... in the birthing room - it interrupts the moment and shuts down oxytocin release. As parents, medical professionals or friends, we are present at the birth to support the mum and the baby, not to direct them. So, allow nature to do its 'thing'.
From the skin-to-skin position, babies often wriggle around to latch themselves onto the breast, instinctively. If the birth has been natural, the baby with inbuilt alertness, will find your nipple and position itself and latch on to the breast correctly.
If you are not sure if you are 'doing it right', this is what you looking for 
    ~ baby's chest is against your chest
    ~ their ear, shoulder and hip are in a straight line
    ~ your baby's chin should be under your breast, his nose will be free to breath above the nipple
       or if baby is in a position as in the photo, their chin will be on the right of your breast and 
       their nose will be on the left.
    ~ then their mouth will open with their lips flanged back.
    ~ pop your nipple into the open mouth if needed
    ~ if your baby has correctly latched on there will be no areola showing below baby's bottom lip
    ~ your nipple should go right to the back of your baby's mouth - this is called a deep latch
    ~ when first latched on the baby will make several rapid sucks, then settle down to a regular 
       rhythm of suck, swallow, breathe, suck, swallow, breathe
    ~ the baby's lower jaw makes big movements right up to their ear and this makes the baby 
       appear to have a 'double chin'
    ~ let the baby feed as long as they want as this keeps your breasts drained as well as 
       establishing you milk supply and satisfying the baby's hunger.
    ~ in the first few days 'cluster feeds' are normal - possibly 10 - 12 daily. This is not spoiling the 
       baby. Relax and enjoy your baby, allowing unlimited access to feed
    ~ you will know your baby is receiving enough milk if -
            # they are alert, bright-eyed, active and contented.
            # they have a moist mouth.
            # they have soaking wet nappies and regular bowl motions.
            # they are growing and gaining weight each month.

8. What things have you found discourage mothers from breastfeeding?
Well, I have rarely had a bottle-feeding mum.
Some mums who want to return to work think they don't have time to breastfeed, but a breastfeeding specialist can help them with this, or a group such as the La Leche League.
Mothers who have bad health or bad eating habits can have trouble breastfeeding.
Mums can be pressured to stop breastfeeding by their peers who may not be mothers themselves and even a young mum's own mother can discourage her from starting or continuing to breastfeed.
Occasionally a mother may not have breast tissue to breastfeed, or she may have inverted nipples.
A baby can be tongue tired or have tongue abnormalities. The incidents of this are increasing, but with specialist help, can be solved. 

9. As a midwife, what do you think of Montana State University's findings - that breastfeeding mothers are seen by the public as less competent than bottle-feeding mothers?
I don't think this question is worth an answer. Every woman is intelligent within their own right. The fact that breastfeeding mums want to care for their baby in the best way possible, shows they are intelligent and competent. The fact is they are giving their baby perfect nutrition.

10. Do you think the solution to right this wrong attitude toward breastfeeding mums, is for more breastfeeding mums in prominent positions, to lead the way in speaking out? Or do you think there is another way?
Well, to start with it would help if there was no advertising of breast milk substitutes in the health care system, no samples given to mothers or pregnant women, or health workers.
But the best way to bring change is through television advertising, through the promotion of mums of different ethnicities, breastfeeding. This is a real way, real education which will affect the  public's thinking. New Zealand TV is ahead of the UK and Australia in these areas, leading the way in its promotion, for example, of Maori mothers being encouraged to breastfeed. New Zealand has good educators and good hospital initiatives.

THANK YOU Margaret. Margaret McGlashan is a part of the team at the Helensville Birthing Unit in the outer Auckland area. This unit is one of New Zealand's top Baby Friendly Hospitals.

THISWEEKWITHTHEKIDS ~ focus your mind on the fact that by breastfeeding your baby, you are giving lifetime benefits to them. Happy feeding.

Friday, May 6, 2011


This Sunday May 8 is MOTHERS DAY. 
Maybe you have been a mum for decades, like my mum who is in her seventh decade of being a mother. Or all your children could have left home and the 'mum feeling' possibly only really returns when everyone comes home for lunch - which is likely happening this Sunday. Or you may be in the middle of lots of action with children and teenagers with lots of spontaneity. Or being a mum and marking Mothers Day personally may be a new experience in your foggy, lacking-in-sleep mind as you care for your babies. And of course there's all those first time pregnant mums who absolutely are classed as mums too.
Mums of all ages ~        ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
                            HAPPY   MOTHERS  DAY

Here for you to read are 6 comments from women at various phases in their life as a mum.

"For 8 months I have learnt all about a precious little being growing inside of me, admittedly though at first, I was sure it was an alien taking over my body. Lately though, I've begun to get to know little parts of its personality, such as the way it responds with kicks and rolls when Daddy comes home, the way it gets excited when I eat its favorite food and the way it dances to its favorite music and instantly settles when audio books are played.
It's such an amazing journey to become a Mum.
What I'm looking forward to most about becoming a Mum is firstly, seeing my baby's face on the day it's born and looking into its eyes and seeing it recognize me for the very first time. I can't wait to pick out which parts it gets from me or Andrew. I already know it has it's Daddy's big feet because I feel them wedged under my ribs constantly!
Beyond B'day I can't wait to teach the baby about the value of family and introduce it to all the people who matter most in our lives. I'm so excited to see the baby's face light up with love and excitement when Andrew comes home from work. Andrew is such an amazing teacher and I'm sure I will forever be in awe at what our baby learns from him.
Mostly though, I'm looking forward to lots of laughs and spending time learning and growing together as a family. I'm sure when I look back in years to come I will be amazed at what I have learnt from my children and from becoming a Mum."

"I am most looking forward to meeting my baby and watching his/her personality develop. I can't wait to take my baby lots of places. I want her/him to know all about New Zealand and American traditions. And of course, I can't wait to shop for those adorable baby clothes."

"7am, two sets of footsteps come running down the hallway. I never quite know who will be in front, Ashton or Hunter. Nevertheless, they come in eager for cuddles and kisses, or a few minutes snuggle in bed. Soon, we hear Cooper summoning one of us to pick him up from his cot. He too joins us in bed for a bit of rough and tumble. At 19 months he delights in rolling around the bed, being pushed over by dad or his older brothers. He takes simple pleasure in turning the lights on and off, then on, then off. Let's not forget Tayla who is either fast asleep in our bed from her early morning feed or simply observing her brothers antics trying to make sense of the madness. Yep, this is our typical morning with our kids - there is no easing into the day, no soft music to wake up to, sleep comes to an abrupt end when my children open their eyes, and soon I have no choice but to surrender. It's morning, no more sleep for me.
However, giving up my morning lie-in is a small price to pay for all the added benefits I get from having 4 precious little ones in my life. I enjoy the endless supply of cuddles and kisses from my kiddies. I love the spontaneous 'I love you' from the mouth of my babes. I enjoy talking to them, learning what is on their mind, in their hearts. They are all unique and so different. The smile that appears when my 4 month old sees me lights up my world. Watching them learn is also a huge perk of the job, to be there when they first roll over, sit, stand, take their first steps. The look of pride on their faces when they accomplish each milestone, no doubt my face would mirror theirs at that same moment. Who could be prouder than mum when her child achieves? 
I love that my children turn to me when they are excited, when they are happy, when they are sad or scared, when they just need someone to be with - they think of mum. I love being depended on, being needed and loved. I love that my children have turned my house into a home. You won't see picture perfect in my home, if you catch us on a good day you might get clean and orderly, but most often you get the lived in look, a trail of destruction as the boys work their way around the house, toys scattered behind them. Who knew cushions are not purely decorative, they make great weapons and fantastic huts. Tin openers make great helicopters to a curious being. My children fill the house with noise, with mess, with laughter, with tears, with energy and life. In doing so, they fill my heart with great memories. Memories of times spent together whether it be doing exciting things or doing nothing, going exotic places or staying right at home, being dressed up and fancy or slobbing around all day in our pajamas, having fun laughing at nothing in particular and everything. Doing life together.
What I enjoy most about being a mother is the unconditional love. Unconditional love I receive from my children, and give to my children. My children don't care if the house isn't spotless and the washing up-to-date. They are not particularly fussed if I serve them gourmet dinner or baked beans on toast. They just need to know that no matter what, mummy loves them! As for me, I love that no matter how tough, busy, stressful life gets at times, I always have 4 little ones that are ready to give and forgive, 4 little ones that love me, no matter what."

"Being a child and being a teenager are two different stages in life, although at times I find I have the same conversations with both within the same week.
I love each of my kids and one of the great aspects in being a mum to children and teens is to watch the change in them as they move from childhood through the growing up years into teenagers and beyond. Living with children growing into teenagers I have regular opportunities to reassure them that I am proud of them. When they are troubled or confused about who they are and think themselves awkward and odd compared to others, I enjoy being able to tell them they are great individuals and it is normal to feel different at this stage in life.
I get excited at the growing and greater abilities in their thinking as we share in conversation.
I find it amazing to see the shift from doing things because of duty, to doing them by choice - all because they are maturing.
I am moved when I receive a text from one of my kids apologizing for their rudeness that morning.
I feel loved when at the end of the night they find me to give me a 'Good night' hug and kiss, then ask how I am.
I am thankful for each of my children and love discovering more about who they are through these years of growing up ~ they give me great happiness."

"My greatest pleasure in life was finally carrying a pregnancy to full term as I struggled to carry past three months. My pleasure in holding my children,  Jason and Tracy in my arms, can not be equalled. Now my life is full of grandchildren, all a great distance away which saddens me, but writing letters and postcards and facebook, keeps me in touch. 
Too go through life without children would have been unbearable. They caused me tears at times as they do, but caused me a lot of laughs, fun and excitement. Being a Mum was my career and enjoyment.  Love to my children."
From EVE.

"This Mothers Day my four children are in different countries ~ one in Africa, one in Australia, one in America and one in New Zealand. My 18 grandchildren are in Australia, Indonesia, India the UK and New Zealand, and my 11 great grandchildren are with their parents. All of them care for me, I know they really have a strong feeling of affection for me and are interested deeply in me. This gives me true joy.  They love me and I love each of them."
From DOROTHY who is 88 years old.

All mums move on to the phases ahead, and it happens faster than we realize, so ~
THISWEEKWITHTHEKIDS -  make the most of 'where' you are right now.

HAPPY  MOTHERS  DAY  TO  YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, May 2, 2011


                                                    Margaret McGlashan - midwife.

"Right-thinking hospitals encourage skin-to-skin contact between mother and child as soon as conceivably possible. Slick with sweat ..... mucous-ey creature placed upon your breast. Unseeing, snuffling, it desperately seeks your nipple ..... "
Megan Nicol Reed : "The Agony and the Ecstasy". Sunday Star-Times   April 3  2011.

Today there is expert help available for mums. This is why I decided that I'd interview my great and highly respected friend, Margaret McGlashan, for this third post and for another following this one, in the series on Breastfeeding. 
I remember coming away from a conversation with Margaret, just after we met, encouraged and impressed having discussed the effect of breastfeeding being a form of contraception and preventing one from falling pregnant. A month or so later I happily fell pregnant with our second child who is now twenty-five. Margaret is a midwife and has been a major part in the delivery of four of our children. Both as I approached the births and in those first six weeks after birth, under Margaret's care I was supported, equipped and given confidence to head into raising my children. She is an expert in the field of breastfeeding. Thank you Marg!!!!! 

1. Margaret, to begin with could you tell us how long you have been practicing as a midwife? 
I finished my training in 1971 and have been practicing full-time for 26 years.

2. Over the 26 years, about how many mothers have you prepared and cared for before, during and after childbirth?
I would have helped between 1000 - 1500 women of various cultures.

3. In preparation when talking with these mothers, do you advocate that they breastfeed their baby?
Yes always, breastfeeding is best.

4. What reasons do you give them to encourage them to breastfeed?
* it is normal and natural, this is one reason women have breasts.
* to sit down and breastfeed gives you the option to sit and relax, enjoy the baby and be quiet.
* as a result of being pregnant you have milk in your breasts ready to breastfeed.
* breastfeeding gives your baby optimum nutrition - for the first 6 months breast-milk has all the nutrients your baby needs.                                        - for the next 6 months breast-milk continues to be the major source of energy and nutrients while family foods are introduced.
* bonding between you and your baby occurs best through breastfeeding.
* only breast-milk gives a baby antibodies which are rich in protection from sicknesses. For the first year and beyond, these important antibodies continue to protect your child.
* the growth and development of your baby's intestine in his digestive system, is helped by breast-milk.
* breastfeeding also helps protect your baby from food protein allergy.
* breastfeeding gives comfort to your baby.
* money wise, breastfeeding is a cheaper option compared to bottle feeding.
* your baby's brain and nervous system development is helped by breastfeeding.
* the structural shape of your baby's mouth is enhanced by breastfeeding, and future skills in clarity of speech and sound production rely on a well formed mouth interior.
* breastfeed babies have less risk of cot death, cancer, eczema, diabetes, diarrhea, ear, nose, throat, chest, bladder and kidney infections.
* breastfeeding lays down the myelin sheath, which is the lining of nerve cells for the baby.
* breastfeeding protects mums from cancer of the breast and ovaries, and gives protection from osteoporosis and anemia.
* mums also benefit from breastfeeding because it helps her abdomen to go down, returning it to normal and preventing hemorrhaging.

5. Are there some predictable problems involved in breastfeeding?
Problems with breastfeeding can   be due to the mother receiving incorrect teaching. As a beginner mother you need sound advice from an expert breastfeeding professional. All midwives are in the process of learning, so ask yours what her breastfeeding success rate statistically in the past has been. Does she encourage skin-to-skin? Or you could choose to deliver at a Birthing Unit.  They are specialists in breastfeeding and have high success rates. Join and attend a support group such as the  La Leche League, or a coffee group of successful happy breastfeeding mums. Start 'right' with your breastfeeding.
Problems with breastfeeding can   be due to a drug induced birth. If you have drugs during labour it can affect your baby who may need more skin-to-skin time to establish their natural sucking instinct.
Problems with breastfeeding  can   be due to a mum's mindset. You can help yourself by getting the correct teaching from a successful breastfeeding specialist which will give you a growing confidence. You need to be relaxed in yourself and feed in a quiet place.
Problems with breastfeeding can   come from the interference that dummies, bottle teats, and nipple shields can cause your milk production. This equipment changes the action of the baby's tongue and jaw, compromising breastfeeding.

PART 4 on Breastfeeding to come, with more information from Margaret.

THISWEEKWITHTHEKIDS ~  enjoy the pleasure or the approaching pleasure, of breastfeeding your baby. Take time to understand the benefits you are giving your baby and yourself as you breastfeed.  And meet up with like-minded people to be encouraged and you will probably find that soon you'll be the one encouraging others.