When I was pregnant with my #1, I took the classes, I read the books, I BOUGHT
the Medela breast pump. Yeah. Bought it.
We are all aware of the wonderful benefits of breastfeeding.
The nutrition, the weight loss (So that might have been a HUGE factor in my
eagerness to do it. Don’t hate.), the cost savings, the fact that they will be
smarter, healthier, in my mind BETTER kids…all of these things made me think
breastfeeding was a NO BRAINER.
thing blew up right in my face.
I gave birth to the most precious baby girl, Avery. While in the hospital,
Avery initially did ok with the whole breastfeeding thing. Huge emphasis on
“ok”. There were no fireworks blasting, there was no mother and child bonding
in peace. It was hard work. They would bring her to us from the nursery every
couple of hours for night feedings, and it was an hour of sheer torture to try
to get her to stop crying, latch on, and for the love of God….EAT something.
She never really would. Did I mention Avery cried a lot? She did. A lot.
refused. I knew if I went down that road, we would never make it work.
Avery became. I found peace only in the idea that if we tried hard enough and
stuck to it…she would catch on.
she was born, and to my horror, she was losing weight. My pediatrician
immediately made me an appointment with a lactation consultant at the hospital.
With tearful eyes, I picked up my crying, hungry baby girl and rushed over to
unwrap my baby girl and put her on the scale. The scale that was quickly
becoming my enemy.
looked on…coaching me along the way.
Avery cried, she pushed me away, she bit me, I finally got her to latch
on, she let go. After a 30 minute torture session, they took her and put her
back on the scale. She hadn’t gotten enough. Try again.
sometimes, and eat a little…but it just wasn’t enough. For me to continue
this…they said that I would have to feed her more often, every 90 minutes, to
make sure she was getting enough.
factor in doing that every 90 minutes, and there wasn’t a lot of down time.
chair, crying a lot, trying my hardest to make it work. In between the constant
feedings, I would try to shower, sleep, eat, and mentally prepare myself for
the next shift. Often times, Avery would have just fallen asleep, and I would
have to strip her down flick her foot, and wake the poor girl to go at it
again. I am not going to lie, I was losing hope, and the exhaustion was setting
mama feel asleep after lunch. During my nap, my mom did what any loving parent
and grandparent would do. She made Avery a bottle.
A bottle that she sucked down.
me down on the couch to break the news to me.
something that I don’t like to do. And
for most of my life up to this point, failure was something that I was able to
steer clear of.
working, go get ‘em grown women to her knees.
try…sometimes things just don’t work out the way you planned them to. Insert parental epiphany HERE.
sickly child who would be below average on the smart kid scale…and that I would
be super fat forever. It was going to be ok. I just wanted her to be ok.
we went to the bottle. But all of our problems weren’t immediately over once we
gave Avery formula. Turns out, she has a milk intolerance, which is PROBABLY
why she didn’t want mine!
baby on our hands.
heavy so gravity would keep it down.
it helped a little more.
realize that Avery wasn’t wearing bibs in every picture anymore. The spitting
up had finally slowed down.
these days. Low and behold…she is healthy, and she is brilliant. Come to find
out, kids who have formula as infants aren’t always special. You can laugh at that idea…but I was ready for her to ride
the short bus to school. She likes to read, play with her legos, and ride her
parenting boot camp that He put me through with Avery during week one of her
life. I learned SO MUCH from it.
to call “the space between.” Between where we set our expectations, and where
things actually end up. To me, that
isn’t always defined as disappointment anymore.
This is the space where, as a parent, we stretch and grow. Stretching
and growing is never a bad thing, right?
he breastfeed brilliantly. GO FIGURE. I only did it for a few months. I had
learned a valuable lesson from Avery that babies are JUST FINE with they drink
formula from a bottle, and daddy taking a few night feedings after I gave it up
for sure saved my sanity. Did I mention I don’t do well with the whole no sleeping thing?
mom and every baby are completely unique…and only YOU know what is really best
for your baby.
should be as parents. For example: how messed up was my vision of breastfeeding
before I had Aves? Thanks, world for making me feel so bad at sucking at it! Use
the books, websites, advice from others…use it all as a guide, but never as the
“be all to end all”.
the time you think you have something figured out…that child of yours will send
you reeling. It’s just the way it is, and it’s wonderful. Once I embraced it,
it taught me to relax, have fun, and enjoy the ride.
Just rent it.
Trust me on that one.