Originally posted on my first blog (http://marriedmilkmaid.blogspot.com) on April 7, 2016, just 10 days after I began writing about my personal ANR journey, and then revised for Bountiful Fruits eight days later, this retro throwback post, now nearly a year old and archived, is one of my favorites because this is something a lot of us “new milk maids” go through when we first experience the awesome joy of realizing the power and ability of our breasts. I will never forget the moment when my body responded to Mr. S ‘ loving diligence by producing milk once more–or how we worked together to increase–and maintain–that lovely liquid gold. I hope you enjoy today’s post!
Loving Milk Maid
If you and your partner have chosen to introduce lactation into your loving ANR, such as Mr. S and I have, you probably know how thrilling it is when those first glistening drops of breast milk appear after all of the hard work you’ve gone through to make it happen! It’s empowering! Emotions run high. You’re excited and elated. You can’t believe your body was able to do something so amazing…and your partner is probably ready for that first taste.
There won’t be much. But do not be disappointed.
As wonderful as it would be to achieve full milk supply right away, the reality is that lactation takes time, it can be a slow (sometimes frustrating) process, and it varies greatly and is unique to every woman because we are unique–and so are our bodies.
It’s sort of cute to think of having our own little milk factories tucked inside our bodies, isn’t it? We can make as much fresh, healthy milk as we like–just not in great quantities right away. We “natural milk maids”, unfortunately, cannot immediately fill massive orders for the goods. We work on a supply and demand basis.
If you and your partner have dreamed of suckling full, milky breasts just after one nursing, but have only managed to produce a drop or two after several nursing sessions, don’t be discouraged. By following a strict set of lactation inducing techniques, and with diligent effort, and a lot of determination, you’ll reach the level of lactation you desire.
As you continue your nursing sessions and produce a little more milk with each feeding, you may find that as your partner suckles he seems to be receiving less milk per feeding, particularly if he is nursing more than once a day. Trust me, he isn’t. He is actually emptying your breasts, which is a good thing, as it will aid in a higher level of lactation.
But you want more milk right away, and it seems that it builds up if you allow him to nurse less frequently.
Uh-oh. You’ve fallen into the milk hoarding trap!
It isn’t a good idea to allow milk to build up in the breasts just so your partner will have larger quantities during feedings. This is extremely counterproductive, as it tells your body that you have enough breast milk and it doesn’t need to make any more. Remember, supply and demand. The more often your “customer” returns, the more product you will need to produce. If no one is coming by to sample the goods, then there is no reason to make more.
If your goal is to fully lactate, then it is best to empty those breasts, whether by nursing (best choice), manual expression, or pumping. (And once it is empty, stay on the breast for an additional five minutes more if possible to encourage production.) Those empty boobies send a signal to all of those girlie hormones (like estrogen, prolactin, and oxytocin) inside of you that encourages them to make more breast milk.
Always remember, a loving ANR is not about milk; it is about intimacy and the desire to share a comforting closeness with your partner. Sometimes, we begin to focus so much attention on one thing that we lose sight of what’s truly meaningful. Continue to work on your lactation level, but concentrate on the bond you are creating with your partner.
If milk flow is a goal in your own personal ANR journey, then remember that some milk is better than no milk…and it is much more than you had before you began.
Now, go empty your breasts–and don’t hoard the milk! 😉
Happy Thursday to you!