The Story Behind 1 Photo of a Baby Surrounded by Breast Milk Will Warm Your Heart

Like many moms, Ashley Clifford decided on breastfeeding before even giving birth, but she also knew that she didn't want to solely nourish her own baby.

"When I found out I was pregnant with this baby, my DREAM was to not only be able to breastfeed her, but to be able to donate milk as well," Ashley explained on Instagram. "Let me be clear about one thing though, I believe FED is best."

However, after giving birth to baby David, Ashley discovered that her breastfeeding journey wasn't going to be as easy as she hoped, and after a month of him barely gaining any weight, she started to supplement him with formula before switching over completely. Her baby boy thrived, but when she found out that she was pregnant with her second baby, Ashley didn't give up on her breastfeeding goals.

"This picture represents many sleepless nights, especially from the first couple weeks, 295 ounces of extra milk, five blocked ducts, and a 17-and-a-half pound healthy, growing baby girl," she captioned the powerful snapshot. "Today I'm donating about 200 ounces for the first time and the feeling I'm having is hard to explain."

Although this is a moment that Ashley has waited years for, she's honest about the emotions that come with donating such a sizable amount of milk. "It's a mix of excitement and love, but at the same time, I'm having some reservations, only because nursing and pumping is HARD!" she wrote. "I feel kind of protective of this BUT that isn't going to stop me from giving some of this away."