A Sunbeam to Warm you, A Moonbeam to Charm You, A Sheltering Angel, That Nothing May Harm You

Monday, June 28, 2010


I have been nursing Lily for 25 days and I consider myself successful! However the fever I had for four days has dried my milk up significantly, and now we are struggling again. She shakes her head away at each feeding and pushes back from me as I try to latch her back on, she knows there is nothing but a trickle for her anymore. It is very frustrating, since I continued to feed through being sick and feeling miserable to make sure my milk stayed in, and it is leaving anyways. I have avoided saying too much about breastfeeding here because I don't want to invited too much outside advice on the this subject that is sensitive for me. I have my sister-in-law Natalie who has been a ton of help and we are working of getting my milk back, but at this point I just want to say I made it to a month. Ever since I decided that Johnny would be formula feed I have felt horrible about the decision, and not because it wasn't best for us and didn't work out wonderfully in our favor, but because society tells me I am a bad mother if I don't sell my soul to breastfeed, and I must always defend my decision by prompting "my husband was in Iraq."

I understand the benefits to both of us, even if I haven't truly seen them in action yet, and I understand how convenient it can be, but I have tried harder this time because I have a romantic vision in my mind's eye of bonding between mother and baby. These sweet moments of connection where baby is nursing and looking into Mom's eyes and Mom plays with baby's little fingers and they both feel something that they carry into their future together. That moment is what I am still waiting for, that every mother I know who has done this long term has spoken of.

I greatly miss the schedule Johnny was on and how relaxed we both where knowing he was full and getting enough to eat, but why then do I still beat myself up about him not getting enough breast milk? He did get it for two full weeks! And I have put Shawn in a very tough position. He has listened to me beat myself up about not breastfeeding Johnny for 2 years and there fore is pushing me to fight and keep nursing Lily. However he also sees how frustrating this situation is and wants to make it all easier on us, but he is, as always, balancing the two well.

Thanks to Papa this sits in our cabinet for supplementing, because they know how important Organic for baby is to me, but how expensive it is! But there is nothing more free or Organic then breast milk, if you have it.

As my blog has become a journal and baby book system for my children I just wanted them to know how important every aspect of their lives are to me and how seriously I take every decision that involves them. Because nothing is more important to me then they are.


Jen said...

Don't feel bad! You have done great! And that bond with ALWAYS be there and ALWAYS be strong, because you are her mother. Formula fed babies have just as strong bonds with their mothers as breastfed babies. The best advice I got from the lactation consultant was: you don't HAVE to breastfed and it is OK to say when it is time to move on; you have done your best; put tons of formula-fed & breast-fed babies together and no one will be able to tell the difference.

I got the same thing (sick) after I gave birth and it dried up my milk. Enough was enough and I stopped and I feel I am a better mother because of it. Instead of focusing and stressing over my breast and milk I was finally able to focus and enough my babies.

That being said, Reglan and Fenugreek helped me a lot and made me produce a lot, but that bout of sickness did me in.

You ARE a great mother, and don't forget that!

Karrie said...

I agree...don't beat yourself up over breastfeeding. Yes, it is the "natural" way but if you are stressing, it will just make it that much more difficult.
(I went to high school with your mom.) I remember when I had our son, both of our moms were horrified that I was breastfeeding! How times change! I wasn't able to keep up with our son...he doubled his birth weight by 8 weeks and nursed every two hours for six months. Neither of us slept well and he was always hungry. We hesitated to start with formula and food because my husband had terrible food allergies when he was young. At six months, even though I had enough milk to feed an army, we began soy formula. He was much happier and so was I. Yes, I loved the time with him, but I had no time to recover between feedings or to store any for an emergency.
When our daughter was born, she was allergic to every formula on the market and was not a good nurser. Even at that, I struggled with her for a year and wished I had the amount of milk that I had had the first time. She just nursed enough to fall asleep...again every two hours for a year this time. If she hadn't had a reaction to every formula we tried, I would have gone to formula much sooner.
Motherhood is a blessing and a struggle, too. Time flies by quickly while the hours crawl. You have to take care of yourself and your health in order to be the best mommy possible. From reading your mom's blog and your blog, you are an amazing young woman! Your children are blessed! Don't beat yourself up, sweetie! Trust me, your children will blossom because of your love and attention. Enjoy these years while you can because before you know it, you will be watching them with families of their own.

God bless you and your family.