Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Bigger Picture

When I became a mother, my whole life changed. It did not necessarily change for the better or for the worse. It just changed. It was a change that I chose, and I change that I adore. A change that I always dreamed of, and I always wanted. Something that I was once so impatient for is right here before my eyes.

Now, most of you that I breastfeed. It is one thing that I was passionate about doing while I was pregnant. It is one thing that I am still passionate about doing for our daughter. It is one thing that I am determined to make work as long as I am happy and it makes the rest of the family happy.

With that said, some (if not all) know that we had some issues arise at her 2 month appointment. The doctor we were seeing immediately wanted me to put her on formula. I declined nicely as I explained that I would like to try and work it out myself. We monitored her and my feedings for a week. I woke her in the night (because she was already sleeping through the night), and I even woke her during naps or "dream fed" her during the day and night. It didn't do much. I went and saw a lactation consultant, and she said our latch was great and everything was going perfect. Baby A just didn't want to gain weight. After two months of hard work and determination, a new doctor had determined that Baby A just had a high metabolism. One of the rare babies that is super active and constantly burning calories.

As most of you also know, Mr. Man is currently deployed. He has been gone for 2.5 months. He was gone for my daughter's 2 month checkup and he was gone when I was working through the kinks. He is still gone. This fact has never stopped me. Has never changed my thoughts on breastfeeding, being a Mommy, etc. After all this is what I always have dreamed of.

Now, I will admit. There has been times where I just wondered what it would be like if I just switched her to formula. Would it be easier? Would she gain more weight? But then with the weight gain I wondered if she would still be as active, still developing properly.

Now, I know many people formula feed and it is a completely normal thing! I absolutely have nothing against giving a child formula at all. However, I do believe that if you can give your child breastmilk, you should.  (Disclaimer before anyone takes this and runs with it. This is an extremely passionate blog. Not meant to offend anyone.)

To move on, the last few days I have wondered where our breastfeeding would lead. Would I stop at a year? Would I go longer? Would I ever deny my daughter her nursing time due to her age? Would I all of a sudden take it away from her? Would she ever wean herself? And the list goes on...

Now, at this point, you are probably thinking... "Oh, goodness! She's one of those!" You know the one's that breastfeed multiple children at once. The one that is still breastfeeding her 4 year old son. One of those. (Which none of these are necessarily wrong, but I can say at this point and time, I do not plan to be one of those.)

Mentioned above is not where I am going with this. Where I am  going with this is...

The simple fact that I can successful breastfeed my daughter. I see many other Moms have a hard time with breastfeeding. Whether it be that their child will not latch on properly or the child has a sickness or whatever... There are many reasons. But every single time I hear of a Mom that is passionate about breastfeeding, determined to breastfeed but still can not - it makes me that much more thankful. That much more willing to go longer, to never deny my daughter her nursing time. To never just give it up because I have to go to work or because I want to travel or because I am tired of feeling exhausted or because I want to feel like I own my body. It makes me absolutely sad to see someone so passionate about breastfeeding and wanting to breastfeed, but just can't.

And that is where I am going with the blog....

The simple fact that I am  thankful for being able to breastfeed my daughter by my own choice. Thankful to have a husband that 1200% supports me and my decision on this and understands that bond that I have built with our daughter. Thankful that my daughter latched on perfectly from the very first nursing session in the hospital. Just very thankful, very blessed, very happy that I can and do have this opportunity that so many mothers dream of.

I told you I was passionate about this.... :D
Sorry for such a long post, but it was time to get it out there!


  1. I think breastfeeding is so wonderful! With my son we had no difficulties but around age 6 months I backed off on the nursing since he started foods. Around 10 months he was down to just morning and evening feedings. 11 months he was just nursing when he first woke up. Shortly before his 1st birthday he went to latch on and everything was gone. It was such a peaceful and natural weaning that we were all satisfied with it.

    That being said, with my daughter things were different. My milk supply was never as strong as the first time. Around 3 months I realized her attitude change was because I did not have enough to give her so we started supplementing with formula and I began pumping in earnest and taking fenugreek. It was to no avail. After 4 months of breastfeeding I had nothing left and she was solely formula fed.

    I've been on both sides now. I still prefer breastfeeding for all the numerous benefits but understand there are occassions when it can't happen. I think it is up to the parents to do what is best for the child, but I'm totally agree with you.

    Weaning age is a touchy subject but I felt that 1 year was perfect. To me, once the child can point/lift the shirt on his own and verbalize nursing they are old enough to not be doing it. That is completely my own opinion and I don't care if people nurse longer if they are comfortable with it. I was not.

  2. I love breastfeeding too. Such a weird thing to say, but it is true. It isn't always easy but it is so worth it to me. I recently read a series of articles in Psychology Today that you might find interesting:


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