Hey hey! it’s me! Phew, it was a nice 2 weeks off! Missed me? I surely missed you. So let me tell you what happened. I did something that most breastfeeding moms would not be an advocate for. I gave my breast-fed daughter a bottle of formula. WHAAAAATTT! I know some of you are like, big deal; while others are like, “why in the world would you do that?” Well, let me tell you my reason in the hopes it helps you out in your journey. I actually did this right before she turned 9 months. But before we go onto that subject, let me take some time to encourage you.
You are strong and beautiful. No matter what you’re facing in your life, God cares and loves you. Though you may not be able to see it (and it sounds a bit cliche’), everything happens for a reason and all things are only for a season. I hope you’re able to smile a bit after reading that! Let’s go on to the article.
If you’ve read the post about breastfeeding, then you’ll see some of the things (I think) you need to know about breastfeeding. If you haven’t, be sure to check that post (you can view here) after reading this one. Breastfeeding is a lot of work, emotionally. For some, it does not tax them emotionally so breastfeeding is easy! But for me (and maybe you too) it is hard. Definitely convenient, but emotionally taxing. I felt like I was going crazy! My daughter only wanted me to hold her. I couldn’t sit down and hold her, or else she wanted to nurse. It doesn’t matter if she wasn’t hungry; to her sitting = nursing time.
I got so frustrated with her always trying to nurse. Hardly ever had a moment to just sit with her and cuddle. I felt like I was at my mental capacity. That’s when I decided to do something I didn’t think I would ever do with her: introduce formula. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy bonding with my daughter, through breastfeeding, but the demand of always wanting to nurse was just unbearable. So here’s what I told myself.
“Have mercy on yourself (and your boobs), Celeste!”
That’s right. I have to be able to give myself some mercy. And you do too! If you’re at this point in your breastfeeding journey, breathe and have mercy on yourself. Now, I am NOT saying to stop breastfeeding or that every mom who’s at this point should supplement with formula! I’m merely stating to relax and know that if you choose to do so, you’re NOT a failure, disappointment, or bad mom. While I believe breast is best (to an extent)…I also believe fed is the goal. So if you feel like you’re about to crack, mentally, have mercy on yourself and consider formula.
Support systems are important. But sometimes they just aren’t enough.
I am in 2 Facebook groups and have a strong support system; they have been super amazing and helpful. In fact, I’ve learned so many things about breastfeeding from the groups and my support system has kept me from quitting multiple times. But sometimes that just doesn’t cut it. I needed a break. I had used all of my pumped milk so I didn’t have any in the freezer and I didn’t feel like pumping. So formula was the next best thing. So here’s what I did to determine if this was the route I really wanted to go, or if I would regret it in the end!
Research all formula with an opened mind.
All formulas are not created equal. I wanted to make sure that the formula I was going to give her, would be super close to mine. I ended up choosing Happy Baby Organic Stage 2 Formula (I am NOT being sponsored in any way). When I researched the brand and compared labels, I don’t recall any maltodextrin or anything crazy like that in there and they have so many vitamins and prebiotics in it. (If you would like me to do a review of Happy Baby formula, please let me know in the comments).
Make your decision.
You never want to rush any decision. Through your support system and researching formula, you may decide that you’d rather continue to nurse and not supplement. Great! WOOOHOOO! You may decide that you’re still at your whit’s end and need to supplement at least one bottle a day. Great! WOOOHOOO! Either way, you’re an AMAZING mom. I honestly thought I would feel guilty about my decision, but that one bottle a day saved my mental state. She had her first bottle July 22, 2017 ( a few days shy of her turning 9 months). I could not have been any happier. I also noticed she was putting on more weight because of the formula. Her doctor was worried about her weight gain (I was NOT)!
We no longer nurse, but that’s another topic. I’ll discuss this in another post. Ultimately, you have to take your mental health into consideration. Enjoy your journey. Absolutely nothing is wrong with formula if you choose that route, just be sure to do your due diligence and research. So give yourself a break; have mercy. You’re a mom…not an emotionless robot. You have feelings and they are very valid. Take some time to breathe, think, and talk with your support system. Never make a hasty decision.
Did you find this post helpful? Are you in the same boat I was in? Post your comments below! Let’s talk about it! Also, remember to head over to my Facebook and Instagram account to keep up with me!!
Until next time,
The Casual Mom