It’s true, after an almost 4-year hiatus, my very own Breastaurant is set to re-open this month.
I’ll likely be hosting a soft opening sometime in the next week. And while I have no doubt the Breastaurant will be busy and well-liked by its number one customer, I’m not excited about it. I have not missed running it in the last 4 years. In fact, there’s been a freedom I’ve experienced from not having to keep it open. There I said it. Well, in so many words. I’m not excited about breastfeeding. And in the club known as Motherhood, it almost seems like it’s an unwritten rule that you’re supposed to love breastfeeding, that it’s supposed to be this magical, wonderful time. I know a plethora of mamas who LOVE breastfeeding because they feel like it’s a connecting and bonding time with their babies. I’m just not that Mama and I’ve come to be okay with it. I’ve never really felt all the feels when it comes to breastfeeding. I do it because I want that for my baby. I do it because I can. I do love that my body can provide sustenance for my baby, naturally offering the exact combination of nutrients her tiny body needs. I like that my body was designed to do it.
I am thankful for the opportunity and while I don’t hate it, I don’t love it like so many other mamas I know.
Yes, there is the pain of engorgement, the leaking, the backache, the rawness of it all. But those aren’t the parts that feel hard to me. Perhaps I don’t love breastfeeding because for however long I choose to breastfeed, there is a demand placed on my body. My body doesn’t feel like my own. And likely because of some past experiences, that demand doesn’t feel good to me, even though I know in my head that breastfeeding is a good thing and I want to offer it to my baby. But as you know, the Breastaurant is a 24-hour joint, open 7-days a week. It’s a demanding job.
Interestingly enough though, I don’t feel these same feelings about the demands of pregnancy.
If experiencing 9+ months with 30lbs of a heating, moving, kicking bowling ball growing inside of you, which then insists on painfully exiting your body through what used to be a very small door isn’t highly demanding, I don’t know what is. Oddly enough though, I rather enjoy pregnancy and birth. There is just something about breastfeeding that I don’t love. And don’t even get me started on pumping. I mean, I have so much admiration for all of you full-time working Mamas who keep your Breastaurant open and running by pumping all day, every day. Seriously, you should win the Breastaurant of the Year award.
All this to say, I love my babies deeply. I bond with them and feel connected to them in so many ways, but breastfeeding just isn’t one of them. Maybe I will feel differently this time around. Regardless, I will continue to prepare for the grand re-opening of the Breastaurant. I just won’t be excited about it.