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Sunday, November 24, 2013

8 months down, 4 to go

When Charlie was a baby, breastfeeding was a tremendous struggle. Between his time in the NICU, slow weight gain, and me going back to work early, it made for a lot of crying (on both our parts), supplementing, and extra pumping sessions. All in all, he got breast milk for about 8 months. When Ginny was born, it was a very different experience. She latched right away, gained weight, I pumped and froze a ton of milk  - everything you could hope for.

Aaaaand this is why I feel so guilty...

Pumping has taken a serious dive and I'm done stressing myself over a few ounces. I'm going to nurse when we're together, pump when I can, and fill in the gaps with my freezer stash of milk and eventually formula.

Now, I know that logically there is nothing to be ashamed of, but motherhood as little to do with logic and everything to do with heart. There are number of things I could try to boost my supply and keep on truckin', but I just don't want to. I don't want to spend hours pumping instead of playing with my kids, I don't want to take supplements that will quite literally make me smell like maple syrup, and I don't want to stress about every ounce I'm falling short. I held the one year mark as a finish line and forgot about taking it day by day. Breastfeeding isn't all or nothing - there are many, many options and this is one of them. 

Will we still make it to a year? Who knows, but it's okay if we don't. Chances are, she'll still get breast milk daily for quite a while, even if its supplemented with formula and baby food. It's not the end of the world. The truth is, I do feel guilty and as if I'm sabotaging something that was technically working, but bigger than that, I feel relieved. I love breastfeeding and really hope we can continue as long as she'd like, but I'm really happy to finally be at peace with this decision.

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