The 28-year-old posted a series of photos of her alongside her baby daughter Auraelia to Instagram, explaining that while many people's breastfeeding journey starts well, for her it was the opposite.
Auraelia – or Rae – is Chessie and partner Mathew Lewis-Carter's first baby, and she has invited her 773,000 followers to join them in the ups and down of pregnancy and new parenthood.
In her usual, brave, candid style, Chessie explained that although it took eight weeks for her baby to latch after overcoming obstacles like painful nipples and mastitis, since then she estimates she has fed baby Rae 3,000 times!
She posted: "After nearly 10 months of milkshake making, my boobies have provided their final bevvy and wow I underestimated the magnitude of emotion that came with stopping breastfeeding. There’s been a tidal wave of tears but also a colossal amount of celebration."
"For some, the way in to breastfeeding is a lot easier than their way out but for me it’s been the other way round. It took the first 8 weeks of Auraelia’s life for us both to learn with the cute cracked and blistered nips, double tongue tie, mastitis, a milk bleb (imagine pulling a cheese string out of your nip, a magic trick I never thought I was capable of), wearing those ridiculously expensive silver little party hats on my nips."
She went on, "I cried in agony through a huge chunk of the feeds but Rae wouldn’t take a bottle so we persevered through."
From breast to bottle
Chessie then kindly shared some of her top tips with other mums coming to the end of their breastfeeding journey – including that you might get a great result with a surprising drinking vessel.
She wrote: "Experiment with different bottles or cups with water. From 5 months old, Rae would grab my huge bottle with a slurpy straw [that I bought to take into hospital to keep my hydrated when I had her). She loved it so around 7 weeks ago, we tried her with a little bit of formula & she surprisingly guzzled it up!"
Chessie also advised giving yourself around four weeks to adapt mentally and physically, and to slowly introduce bottle alongside boob. "It gave my udders a chance to customise their supply slowly & then we stuck to just the morning feed for 3 weeks. Treasuring every gulp."
Most crucially she also urged her followers to be kind to themselves, as not only is it an emotional milestone, but a hormonal one too with a "surge of prolactin and oxytocin every time you feed." She admits that even looking back at photos or videos of her feeding Rae is enough to bring on a wave of intense feelings, but thanks to a supportive network of friends she is ready for this next stage of being a mum.
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