How I Breastfed for Over a Year

I breastfed for 13 months and I couldn’t be more proud of myself! It was something that I decided I wanted to do even before pregnancy. Fed is best, of course, but I knew I wanted the bond and endless benefits that come from nursing.

Keep reading to see how I was able to breastfeed my baby for over a year!

Here are some of the benefits from the CDC website (click for reference):

benefits of breastfeeding from the CDC

How I breastfed my baby for over a year:

I Kept Telling Myself I Could Quit

I told myself I could quit – tomorrow. I just had to make it one more day! It’s simple, but it got me through the first really tough weeks.

I built a freezer stash for my own sanity.

I began pumping almost immediately after my milk came in.

This allowed my husband to give her a bottle and it gave me a little freedom to get out of the house, or you know, take a shower.

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I Rewarded Myself

One thing I don’t miss about breastfeeding is the sheer amount of calories I would have to consume to make enough milk and to feel satiated.

I would treat myself to my favorite high protein, high carb meals all the time!

I also purchased a few new sweaters and tops that were nursing friendly.

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I Followed other Breastfeeding Moms on Social Media

I followed @g1avasis, @marissathemilkmom, and @milkymamallc for inspiration! I didn’t know a lot of moms who nursed past a few months, so seeing other moms online really helped motivate me to keep going.

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I supplemented when necessary.

There was a point where I didn’t have hours to sit pumping the amount I needed to satisfy my baby. She was only getting one bottle a day, but once we started solids my supply had slowed down.

It seemed like a huge decision at the time, but we started supplementing with formula. My husband was able to give her a bottle and I wasn’t attached to the pump every spare moment.

Let me tell you, I have never felt so free!

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We weaned when we were ready.

We weaned around 13 months. My baby was nursing for a minute or two when she woke up. She would pinch and poke me towards the end and it was becoming a very uncomfortable and frankly annoying experience.

One day, we just stopped. There was no “last time” or tears. It felt like a mutual decision between my baby and I.

I am so grateful for the bond we share and memories we made nursing. I’m proud of myself for sticking with it and finding a way to make it work.

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It’s been a relief to have my “body” back.

No, not in that way. My body will never come “back” because it never left. It has definitely changed and shows the wear of a pregnancy and birth and sleepless nights.

What I mean is it’s a relief to have my body back. I no longer have to monitor what I put in my body and worry about it affecting my baby. I’m not in pain if I haven’t fed or pumped in a few hours.

I had an instinctive moment of hesitation while drinking an extra large espresso drink, before remembering that the caffeine wasn’t going to affect anyone but me!


What’s your experience with breastfeeding?

Is it normalized where you live?
Let me know below!

O.

7 Comments

  1. I breastfed my oldest until she was 2 1/2 and I weaned her around Christmas after being bitten and traumatized near her. I breastfed my middle until she was around 18 months until the baby came along, tried tandem, couldn’t do it because she would try to hit the baby. I’m still nursing the baby who just turned one but know that it’s almost time to wean because I’m going crazy. 🙁

    I never responded to a pump so great job!!! That’s AMAZING!

    Congratulations on your journey. 💛

    1. Thank you for reading and commenting! That’s amazing that you were able to breastfeed for so long! It’s important that we listen to ourselves and our bodies when we’re “done” 🙂

      1. You’re so welcome! I appreciate your kindness because it was definitely a difficult journey I absolutely agree about listening to our bodies and not worrying so much! 🥰🤗

  2. Congrats Olivia! I was thankfully able to breastfeed both of my babies until they were ready to wean. It’s really common where I live, but not a lot of older generations breastfed so I found support among other moms in the same stage of children as me. Enjoy your extra strong cup of coffee, you deserve it!

    1. Thank you for reading and commenting! That’s amazing that it’s common where you live. Finding that support is so important!

  3. Congratulations!! This is something I wasn’t able to achieve, but love hearing other’s successes! Your story, tips and sharing of your experinece is wonderful, and thank you so much for “fed is best”. <3

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