This is going to sound a little crazy but the biggest surprise (for me) about pregnancy has been the ways my body has changed. I've always heard that a pregnant woman's body changes and to some degree I totally expected that change to take place but never did I imagine it would happen in the so many small areas that it has.
At 39 weeks now, I feel like my body has been completely taken over and it's no longer my own. My lungs are crowded out by my huge uterus which has made breathing (especially while sleeping) nearly impossible. I love to eat but heartburn kind of ruins the experience and let me not even go there with the hemorrhoids! My ankles are non-existent, I snore like a lion, and there are just so many more things that I don't have the heart to list here. I'm super excited to meet my little boy, but never imagined it would take all of this! And I haven't even gone through labor yet!
So, with all these changes to "my temple" with the pregnancy, I can't help but wonder what changes breastfeeding will bring. I have already noticed significant changes in my breasts. My once pretty small, pink nipples are now large and a darker brown color. Although the new pigment isn't my favorite, I do have to admit that it's been fun to have cleavage... who needs a push-up bra?!
I admit that I worry about lots of things when I think about my future breastfeeding. Will my body produce enough milk? Will my baby respond well to it? Will it hurt? But the appearance of my breasts is probably my most selfish (and therefore least expressed) worry. I have friends who have basically told me that their "girls" have never been the same since weaning their babies. Don't get me wrong, I'm so excited and grateful that I have been made with all the right "tools" to nurse my baby and provide nourishment and comfort to him in such a special way. Having the opportunity to breastfeed my child means the world to me – but what about my body? I wonder if my boobs will resemble deflated balloons and if I'll ever wear a bandeau top bikini again. Should I start saving money for that breast-lift surgery now?
I guess there is no sure way to tell how my body (and "the girls") will react to breastfeeding. I just hope that by maintaining a healthy diet, getting lots of exercise and saying a few prayers, I can be happy with my new "mommy" body. No-matter what happens to my bosom, I know that the results of this commitment to nurse my son will all be worth it!