I’ve been having them.
We are nominally planning another baby. Nominally because I’m not ovulating yet. Which is something that is stressing me out because it means that I’ll have to wean early as attempts at cutting back are not going well, nor are they productive. Trying to tangle out all the ‘whys’ is complex. It just makes me feel very whiny. I think what sums it up is that I never thought it would be like this. I never thought I’d have so much trouble breastfeeding. That in itself makes me want to enjoy our normal relationship now. But, then, I never thought I’d be at almost 13 months postpartum with no sign of ovulation in sight. So I can’t enjoy breastfeeding like I ought to as pressure to have another baby sometime within the next year or so (both from myself and from my husband) and the lack of ovulation makes me sad. And then I keep having nightmares about having these problems again. It’s easy to say enjoy it, or don’t worry about the next one or any one of various things that seems like it would remove pressure from the other things, but they are all kind of interlinked. This would be a better situation for a last baby rather than a first baby. It all makes me feel like I want to have my cake and eat it too (which is a silly saying), so I feel like I’m acting spoiled because it works for plenty of other people, so why not me. But then this whole breastfeeding experience has been difficult for me, so why not this.
I find myself full of horrible thoughts and regrets, like I wouldn’t have this problem if I’d just given up and not fought so hard. And I feel like a terrible person. It makes me feel nearly criminal to be considering this after all I did to keep breastfeeding. Then wanting to stop for fertility reasons? Very selfish. Funny how I wouldn’t even blink if someone else in a similar situation told me they were going to do the same thing. What kind of crazy standard am I holding myself to?
I feel like I’m over the edge in terms of what I can tell people I did to keep going and so I don’t often get a well done because I guess it’s just too fantastic. Fantastic meaning crazy rather than well done that is. I wonder if people think that I’ll yell at them if they ‘confess’ they gave their baby a bottle of formula in some middle of the night desperation. Or people try to play the one-up game with me and I try to keep out of it and then everyone goes quiet after I say something. So I end up trying not to say anything. It’s not a contest.
I don’t think I really like the well done phenomenon in relation to breastfeeding anyhow. I feel it both trivializes the pain that those who did go through as much if not more and did not get somewhere they can be happy with went through, while also making those who went through less, whether they stopped or not, feel awkward. Basically there seems to be a window where well done is the response you get. On either side of that there’s funny sidelong looks for being crazy or looks down the nose for not doing enough (which funnily enough you’ll get even if you are in crazy territory).
But anyhow, I’ve been having nightmares. That this is going to happen again despite my best efforts, that it is a tongue tie and no one will cut it, that it isn’t and no one will help me anyhow.