Here is another guest post by my breastfriend Velvet’s husband, Jonathan Adam Roxas. Atan was one of my first guest posters back in 2009. You can read his first post here. Thank you Atan and Velvet for sharing your experiences once again!
My favorite sport is basketball and I even have a big scar on my leg to show it. Breastfeeding was a topic I dared not discuss until I became a father. Basketball and breastfeeding might seem on the surface to have no direct correlation with each other, but they do have a lot in common. What are the similarities of my favorite sport to my family’s breastfeeding experience?
More than eight years ago, my first thoughts on breastfeeding were that it seemed like an “exclusive” thing between my wife and my eldest daughter. Watching them from the sideline for what seemed like forever, I decided I didn’t want to be left out and eagerly yearned to be part of the play.
From being a rookie, I turned veteran in breastfeeding support. Knowledge in basketball helped me succeed as a supportive husband. Here are a few basketball terminologies that guided and helped me along the way:
TEAMWORK: Breastfeeding entails a lot of teamwork between the real superstars –my wife and daughters. I see myself as a point guard when they need assists to ensure that the play is followed. Simple things like putting pillows to make baby and mommy more comfortable are sometimes the onlysupport they need.
SUBSTITUTION: Substitution is made when players need to rest and other players come in. These are moments when fathers have to step in and work their magic with the baby like changing diapers or rocking them to sleep.
TIMEOUTS: Timeouts are breaks called to talk about the play strategy. In the context of breastfeeding support, these are the breaks my wife takes whenever I bring her to a dinner date or a movie out. Our special dates encouraged her to breastfeed longer.
COMPETITION: At first I thought I was on the opposing side competing with them. But my later experiences made me realize that the real competition to our breastfeeding experience was an unsupportive environment. We were constantly surrounded by media ads brainwashing us to give up breastfeeding. Doctors gave the impression that my wife’s milk supply was not enough, but who can really tell what is enough?
Eight years have passed and we have successfully breastfed two daughters. Now my younger daughter is turning four and is still breastfeeding. Ohhhh we are already in overtime!
*note: Their second daughter recently turned four and has weaned from breastfeeding on her 4th birthday. Child-led weaning rocks!