We were madly in love and I had just birthed our baby about a week and a half prior. The oxytocin was flowing like crazy and our new little family was blissfully bonding.
I remember my husband sitting with me while I was breastfeeding. He would stare lovingly at our little girl and I, while she and I tried to figure out the intimacy and awkwardness of early breastfeeding. He would stroke her feet, chuckle at her tiny gulping sounds and offer her his finger for her tight fisted grip.
Although he knew that I was the only one who could offer our daughter nourishment, there was a part of him that wanted to share in that closeness. He wanted to feed our baby. He was so cautious of not interfering with our process, but he really wanted to feed our baby.
One summer afternoon, when our daughter was barely 2 weeks old, she was ready to nurse. I took her into the bedroom where I could stretch out and be more comfortable. My husband followed me into the bedroom. Before I could get settled, he took off his shirt and sat on the bed with his back against the headboard. He opened his legs and asked me to sit in front of him with the baby in my arms and my back to him.
I laid the baby on the bed in front of me and I took off my top, exposing my breasts to nurse her. He asked me to lean back against him. He reached his left arm around me and supported our baby and he nestled his chin on my left shoulder. As he brought his right arm around me, he whispered to me, “ put your arms down, let me do it”.
I let my arms slip down to my sides and melted into his chest.
With our baby in one arm and my breast in his other hand, he fed our baby my milk.
I don’t know if prior to that I had ever felt so loved or so connected to anyone. We were a family and I felt his pride in me as a mother. He respected the mother baby bond that we were developing and he found a way to share in it. I loved him for wanting to share in our experience and I knew in my heart how lucky I was to be his wife.
Those early days were amazing for our family. Not perfect… but amazing.
I share this with you because it brought us closeness and it enriched our early parenting experience. I encourage you to open your minds, understand each other’s needs and create a postpartum experience that is unique to your family.
Authored by: Randy Patterson