If I knew then what I know now, that is how I feel about feeding. This is a loaded topic. There are winners and losers on both sides of the equation. I wanted to breastfeed my daughter and tried really hard. Financially seemed very appealing to us, formula is very expensive. I did breastfeed her for a while and enjoyed it, what a great way to connect with her. I admit it, it isn’t an easy task. It was very time consuming. It was very tiring. The pumping thing just did not work for me…while at the hospital and even before delivery I heard a lot about the benefits and how convenient it is to breastfeed, but not about its challenges.
My baby was not a big baby, she was 5 pounds and 7 ounces at birth. When we left the hospital , she was 4 pounds 19 ounces. Three days later, at the pediatrician’s office, she was 4 pounds and 14 ounces! I was alarmed. We were at the pediatrician’s office every week to monitor her weigh for a while. The weight gain was just not happening and I was breastfeeding her every 2 and a half hours… I was not eating. I was not producing the kind of nutrition she needed. I was not paying any attention to what I was or was not doing to myself, I was totally consumed by this tiny little baby that needed to eat and gain weight. At the hospital, we made the decision to give her formula to complement for feedings. You can’t turn breast milk on, lol, it is an not an event, it is a process and as such, it takes some time. We started to feed her more formula and less breast milk, slowly but surely, she was making progress.
I have always been very very patient with her feedings. My baby drinks Similac Ready To Feed Formula and at the hospital we were given the individual bottles, so cute, and also so expensive. Those bottles once opened are good for an hour, so feedings have been an hour event. I don’t give up when she stops…after a little break, sometimes she just needs to be burped, she will take the bottle again and finish it. We have graduated to Similac Ready To Feed 1 qt. bottles, a way more economical.
On December 30, 2013 I started her on cereal, made an executive decision to add one teaspoon of cereal per ounce of formula, and that is not what is recommended. My decision has been a good one, her pediatrician tells me: “… keep doing your way, it is working…” Solid foods will be discussed during our next visit. What does it mean to me? I will have a lot more to clean up, more laundry to do. Every milestone is bittersweet. She is growing up so fast! She giggles, her hair is changing, she reaches out to me and holds my hand close to her as fights her sleep…these are priceless things that I am experiencing…a couple of days ago, she was sleeping, I was checking on her, kissed her arm and she was laughing!! There are moments meant to be committed to memory. Mommy business is overwhelming. I have to find ways to take care of myself, she deserves the best of me. I have to take care of myself, physically, mentally and emotionally. I need to reclaim the girly girl: the one who likes to dress nicely, loves skin care and little make up, loves a good hair cut… these things are on my most wanted list, lol! I will be teaching these things to her someday. Right now, I can teach her that every time a girl goes to the girl’s room, she needs to redo her hair, touch up a little. … every time I change her diaper, I tell her: “…ok, now we need to brush your hair 🙂 …”