Parenting

What extended breastfeeding looks like

Self portraits of breastfeeding your children never turn out, so Run-at-home mom blogger Jennifer Pinarski turned to the professionals to capture her memories of extended breastfeeding.

The Mamarazzi Photography

I have exactly one photo of Isaac nursing. It was a self portrait, taken December 25, 2006. He was one day old, my milk had just come in and we finally figured out the latch. I remember it being the most amazing moment in my life — knowing that I was able to feed our son.

(Don’t be jealous — it soon dissolved into terrible latches, a sleepyhead baby who fell asleep at the breast constantly and four months of pumping before I had the courage to attempt breastfeeding again).

I snapped a picture of this moment and I really wished I hadn’t. When the new mommy haze and the hefty doses of painkillers from my emergency C-section wore off, all I saw were these gigantic swollen breasts next to my son’s tiny head (which was still terrifically cone-shaped). It is a horrible picture. I never took another picture of him nursing. Ever. It is that traumatic.

Recently on Twitter there was a discussion about whether or not moms had pictures of themselves nursing their children. The consensus was that you should have a picture of you nursing your baby and after looking at the pictures some moms were sharing, I was feeling a little sad that I didn’t have any of Gillian yet. At 20 months, Gillian is still nursing quite often, but since her older brother self-weaned at the same age, I feel like any day she might decide enough is enough.

We asked the photographer who so perfectly captured our family when Gillian was a few days old to do another shoot. Inevitably, Gillian asked to nurse during the shoot — and I asked The Mamarazzi to take of some pictures of us together. They are beautiful and I will always treasure them.