Dear Diary,

While I haven’t breastfed, in over six years, I’m still a huge supporter of it, and encourage every expecting mother, to at least give it a try. And if they decide to go the formula route, that’s their own personal choice! I nursed my son, for a year, while working full-time. You know what that means–me and my Medela became best friends. In fact, the whirring sound of the breast pump almost became soothing to me. I breastfed my son, for 11 months. I would’ve gone the entire year , and then some, but I ended getting a really bad case of mastitis, an infection that cause breast pain and swelling. So, for the last four weeks of his first year, I fed him formula. At first, I felt like a failure, because I couldn’t make it a full year. However, I got over that real quick; after all, his life had been mostly sustained on my breast milk, alone, throwing in a bit of baby food, here and there.

Mastitis aside, I loved breastfeeding. The relationship it allowed me to build with my son was phenomenal. It was one of the few moments, when it was just us, quietly enjoying each other’s company. Even though, the last bit of my experience was horribly painful, I know that if I ever have another baby, there is no other choice, for me. I will definitely breastfeed again.

With all that said, there a few things I would recommend all new mothers breastfeeding while working throw the following items into their brief cases.

  • Breast Pump: If you’re planning on going back to work, or even want to have a life outside of breastfeeding, I recommend you get a quality breast pump. I used a Medela Pump in Style (PIS).
  • Nursing Pads: I used the disposable nursing pads, because it was easier when I went back to work full-time when my son turned eight weeks. And, I speak from experience–aside from peeing your pants or an unexpected visit from Aunt Flo–nothing is as embarrassing as having leaky breasts, in a white bra and shirt.
  • Nursing Bras & Tanks: These both, make it easier to nurse, or pump, on demand.
  • Lanolin: I honestly don’t know where I’d be, without it. Aside from the rawness, eventually babies grow teeth.  And, when they bite, it hurts like a, well, you get what I mean.

If you do decide to breastfeed, and I really hope you do, I wish you nothing but happy and healthy breastfeeding relationships!

Bree Glenn lives in metro Detroit, Mich., with her husband and son, who she breastfed for 12 months. She blogs at The Mom with Moxie  about parenting, marriage and everyday life. She’s a wife and mom trying to juggle family, a full-time job, life and everything else. She enjoys connecting with friends online via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

About The Author

#Chocolate Milk

Throughout August, in celebration of National Breastfeeding Awareness Month, Diary of a First Time Mom will publish a new nursing story each day, written by 31+ black mom bloggers. DFTM Creator Heather Hopson asked each blogger to submit a personal breastfeeding story, and they immediately emailed their experiences—both good and bad. They wrote about everything from allergies and ignorance to pumping and working. Heather curated this collection to educate other African-American women about breastfeeding. That way, they will be armed with information to make a decision. Heather hopes you will join the movement on Twitter. Follow @dearmomdiary and the participants. You can check the #ChocolateMilk blogger ambassador list! Be sure to tweet using #ChocolateMilk. And don’t forget to share your story by clicking on Breastfeeding→ Lactation Nation on the menu bar above. Meanwhile, let us know in the comment box below why you nursed—or didn’t.

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