Thursday, January 27, 2011

Musings on Motherhood

Being a mom has actually taught me a lot about myself and life.. and I’ve only been one for 3 months now. I want to share some of my insights over the next few posts..

Ok, I’ll admit it. I hate breastfeeding. I was prepared for how long it would take. I was prepared that it would be hard. I was prepared that it may hurt. I thought I was prepared for all of it, but I wasn’t... not even close. It was exhausting!

When Carter got hungry, I had to get all prepared..
1) Grab the Boppy
2) Get the nipple shield
3) Apply the nipple shield (which would take at least 30 seconds to a couple minutes to put the nipple shield on because it would pop off)
4) Soothe crying baby--by that time, Carter would be crying hungrily, so I had to deal with red-faced baby who was so mad he didn’t want to latch on… Then, he’d latch on, but he’d start whining/crying within a minute because the milk wouldn’t let down fast enough;
5) Sit on the couch while he’d eat for 45 minutes to an hour while I sit and watch TV;
6) Wait 1-2 hours and repeat.

It was just too frustrating! I felt like I never got a break. I was a milk machine.. and I guess I still am. I would actually dread feeding time because it was such a battle. Plus, and this may be TMI, my nipples were so sore I wanted to scream even if my shirt or bra rubbed against them. The actual act of breastfeeding doesn't hurt, but it does do a number on your boobs. I thought I would enjoy breastfeeding for the cuddle time and the closeness with my baby, but I didn’t. Not at all.

We got off to a bad start with me being on magnesium sulfate during my labor, which causes babies to be lazy eaters.. and then with my milk coming in late.. and then with Carter getting jaundice and having to supplement with formula until my milk came in… Ugh. Also, I’m a very private person, so I am not comfortable with breastfeeding in public. I should’ve known or expected that!

Right now, I am strictly pumping, and actually enjoy that much better. I think I might do that next time around too. Then, we both can enjoy feeding time together. My baby can get the nutrients from breastmilk, and I can have a less stressful feeding method with bottles. Plus, I still reap the benefits of breastfeeding (i.e. burning 500-700 calories in a day).

I am jealous of those women to whom breastfeeding came so easily, but then again I’m not. I’m not tied down to the couch anymore, and it doesn’t take an hour to feed my baby. However, I do feel like I am constantly hooked up to the pump, but that is an acceptable price to pay for my sanity.


Shannon said...

I also dislike breastfeeding. I can't do it in public so it stresses me out if I think the baby might need to eat while we are out. It is messy and I definitely require a boppy or at least a pillow of some kind. I always pump a lot at the beginning when I have lots of milk and then start a bottle right at 6 weeks (of breastmilk). I usually start weaning around 3-4 months with one bottle a day of formula. I let go of the guilt of choosing not to breastfeed for a year a long time ago. It just doesn't work for that long for me. Glad that you found a solution that works for you and Carter! That's the most important thing. :)

Anna said...

I think whatever you are comfortable is the right thing. It does sound like a lot of work - maybe there's too much stuff involved now.

The Original TomKat said...

He'll lose the nipple shield eventually and then it will be wonderful! Rose straight up grabbed it off my boob one day when she was five months old and threw it- never used it after that!

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