While pregnant for my second child, I made the decision to breastfeed / pump for her. Not only did I want her to get that nutritious colostrum right after birth, my frugal mama heart just couldn’t justify spending hundreds of dollars a month on formula.
Well … I HATE it.
Fast forward three months. Since her birth, we have sold our home, bought a new home, moved, our toddler started at a new daycare and I have gone back to work. It’s a lot for anyone. But all of this while also breastfeeding and pumping for our infant? Having to get off of all dairy due to a milk protein sensitivity? I hate it. I am trying so hard to stick with it, but it is making me physically ill. I get nauseated every time I pump. Clogged ducts and painful let downs are my daily reality. My breasts hurt far beyond I ever imagined they would and I would really love to recoup the two plus hours a day I spend hooked up to that blasted pump.
Don’t Mom Shame Me … You Don’t Know Me.
I LOVED breastfeeding / pumping for my first child. It was empowering and amazing that I could provide all the sustenance my baby needed in his first year. It was difficult (he wouldn’t stayed latched on for more than a few minutes at a time), but I was able to exclusively pump for a year. Along the way, I donated over two thousand ounces to other moms who couldn’t breastfeed their children.
This time around? I was ready to quit almost as soon as I began. I am trying to push through, really. But some days are so chaotic that I can’t imagine continuing to do this for the next seven months. I can’t say that aloud for fear of the sanctimommies who will surely jump me for even thinking of giving my precious baby formula. But here is the thing – formula or breast, she will get the nutrition she needs and will grow up to be sassy, wonderful and sweet. As my husband recently said, she’s already a boss.
Give a mom a break … And stay in your lane.
Breast feeding / pumping is not for the faint at heart. It is a tough journey and I know a lot of moms struggle to continue – maybe they just don’t want to talk about it because they don’t want to be shamed / ostracized / judged for not LOVING it. In the end, whether I am able to push through and give her breast milk for her entire first year or I decide to stop and give her formula, that decision? It is solely mine to make. No one else’s.