The Lamaze website has this very nice article, which details how women are born for breastfeeding. It starts when we were just fetuses in our own mothers’ wombs, continues through puberty, escalates during pregnancy, and comes out in full force after birth.
Just as your body is designed for pregnancy and childbirth, so too you were made for breastfeeding your baby. (And you don’t have to do anything to prepare for it!)
But, just because it’s natural doesn’t mean that it will happen flawlessly. The article gives information on how to help ensure a smoother transition into nursing (immediate skin-to-skin contact); but one way to help get you prepared is to see other women breastfeeding. Your local La Leche League group will usually have numerous nursing moms that you can observe. But what if you’re too shy or self-conscious to do that? (You shouldn’t be, by the way — if they’re not too self-conscious to let you observe them, you shouldn’t be too self-conscious to watch; but it is understandable if you are.) What if you don’t have a local group? What if you’ve rarely or never seen another woman nurse, never seen a baby latch on right? What if you’ve heard horror stories about painful nursing, bleeding, cracking, and otherwise sore breasts? It doesn’t have to be that way. Breastfeeding with Comfort and Joy is a wonderful book to have, to help with any of these scenarios. With sensitive and beautiful photographs demonstrating a proper latch and helpful text, you can look at breastfeeding women for as long as you want or need to. A proper latch can go a long way to eliminating most if not all of the common breastfeeding problems.