A few weeks ago I posted an article from Spearmint Baby. The article was about sleep but one thing really continues to resonate with me. The author of the article basically poses the question, "Will you look back on this time with regret or resentment?" I think about that all the time. There are things we will regret for the rest of our lives but some things really stick with us and even haunt us.
I am often haunted by the fact that I let Makenzie have a formula bottle at only a few days old. I am haunted by the fact that perhaps I could have "manned up" and held and breastfed Makenzie while I was being stitched up for 2 hours with, at times, no local anesthesia. Perhaps the thing I resent the most is trying so hard to breastfeed. I look back at pictures and memories of the first 6 weeks and literally get a pit in my stomach. Not because it was difficult or stressful, not because of the lack of sleep but because I lost weeks of valuable time just enjoying Makenzie. Instead of cuddling my sweet baby and feeding her or even attempting to feed her. I fought her to breastfeed. She would get so mad and just scream. I was soooo stressed and she was so mad. I spent countless hours on the couch doing nothing but trying to breastfeed, sometimes in tears, sometimes frazzled. It pains me that I look back on those first few weeks with such horror.
I am so thankful that we still bonded so closely despite all of the turmoil but I am not one that believes that breastfeeding moms have a stronger bond with their baby. Makenzie and I had, and still have, sweet bonding times as she's in my arms drinking her bottle. I take in her every feature and pray for her and sing to her or massage her little hands. Now that she's older she stops drinking for a minute to say, "oooohhh" or to laugh or smile at me. Just because she has a bottle in her mouth and not my breast doesn't mean that we have bonded any less.
As I would do research to increase my milk supply, I would feel so much regret and frustration. The comments from the breastfeeding advocates are so strong and even hurtful to those of us who strive to feed our babies what's best but just aren't succeeding. Here I am making Makenzie's organic baby food and scrutinizing every food that goes into her body and yet I feed her human engineered milk. I know it sounds like an oxymoron but it is what it is. I am SO thankful that Makenzie has received a majority of her nutrition from breast milk but there are many moms that don't have that luxury or just haven't thought that exclusively pumping was option because it's not promoted by most lactation consultants or doctors.
All of this venting stems from this article that I read today. It totally made me realize how I was feeling about our feeding situation and the