No Boob for You

Breastfeeding was not something that I gave much thought to while I was pregnant. I had read enough horror stories to know that some people found it unbearably painful (I’m sorry but blood and nipple should never ever be used in the same sentence) and some people just couldn’t make enough milk to keep up with voracious baby appetites (3 ounces doesn’t sound like a lot until you’re sitting with a breast pump for half an hour). I figured that it was what it was and if I could I would.

Well, it was and I did. Breastfeeding turned out to be easy for me. Nothing was painful and the only “discomfort” I had was when my boob would leak. There are some involuntary actions that I am very thankful for: heart beats, breathing, my knee moving when it’s tapped in the right spot. A leaky boob is not on that list. However, since that was my biggest breastfeeding gripe I consider myself blessed.

For the first 2 months of Otis’ life he was exclusively breastfed. He was happy and I was happy. I don’t think I lost weight faster or that we were more bonded because of it (but I don’t think being the sole provider of milky goodness hurt us in that department), but I will say that I am super thankful that it worked out for me the way that it did.

When I went back to work boob pumping was the plan.  I didn’t have much of an issue producing, but I don’t know if you’ve seen our little man. He likes food. So formula supplement was definitely part of his diet, and every night we nursed in the bed until we fell asleep.

Then he turned 5 months old. And he didn’t want The Boob anymore. Like, at all. He would turn away and cry and was only satisfied by The Bottle. Any self-esteem issues I had came alive.

“He doesn’t love me, want me or need me! Wah!”

I was so sad that our special relationship was about to end. At first I thought that he was weaning himself off of The Boob. Then I found out it wasn’t weaning. It was a nursing strike which is where a baby refuses to eat and this usually happens when they’re teething.  And wouldn’t you know it, Otis’ first tooth started to poke its way through this weekend.

Either way, I had already dried up because I went ahead and quit pumping. Let me tell you, the awkwardness of two boobs of different sizes is, well, funny. Anyways, little man is now a formula baby (until he gets introduced to real food in October), and I’m ok with that.

Or at least I think I’m ok with that.

How was nursing for you guys? How did you decide to quit? Is it just me or is there severe mommy guilt over any and all decisions made with the first baby?

Also, a funny note. When I told my mom that I had finished nursing she looked horrified. Her grandbaby was no longer getting the wonderful nectar of motherly love?!? She was outraged*. And then I reminded her that she didn’t breastfeed any of us.  A Lola’s love is strong…

*I say outraged, but she wasn’t outraged. Maybe just a tad miffed. I’m a blogger. I exaggerate. So sue me.

11 thoughts on “No Boob for You

  1. Connie says:

    Well I for one think you have done a great job. So keep the guilt in check you are a wonderful Mom.

  2. Secret Agent "CT" says:

    I am impressed that you kept it up for 5 months! That’s awesome and a feat in itself! I think you should be patting yourself on the back. I wasn’t able to do it that long because of my stupid surgery and had horrible guilt about it…at the time. I have not even thought about it again until reading your blog. Even as I write this, I have no guilt. I did the best I could for my baby and she is perfectly healthy. (Except for the cold/allergies/sinus crud that she has and has recently shared with me…) So kudos for you and Otis! You are doing great being Otis’s Mommy!

    Watch out for those teeth! My little one would get one tooth and then another would pop right through a few days later. She loved those things that look like mesh bags attached to a giant ring pop. We would put ice cubes or frozen fruit in there for her. She loved it.

  3. Mandi says:

    First, I love your blog. You crack me up.
    Second, I also just finished breastfeeding about 2 weeks ago. I managed to do it till he was 14 months. (I’m in Canada and our mat leaves are a year.) I say good for you for continuing to pump while you went back to work. That’s hard work. My son LOVED breastfeeding but one day he just looked at my nipple and was like ‘what is THAT?’ and it was like he suddenly forgot how to latch on. I wouldn’t say I was devastated but I am pretty sad about ending our special relationship.
    Be thankful you don’t have to breastfeed through the teething stages though! Bottom teeth? No problem. Top teeth? Killer. I had 2 permanent lines from where his teeth would sit. And they actually cut my skin. I had scabs.

    • Marie says:

      Thanks, Mandi! And I won’t lie, I was kind of ok with missing out on teeth nursing :p And thank you for refraining from using the words blood and nipple in the same sentence even though you obviously could! I wonder if there’s a market for teeth guards for nursing babies :p

  4. beccageorge says:

    I love this! I actually enjoyed nursing. I feel like when I tell people this they put me in that weirdo, your are going to nurse your kids until they are five category but it was a peaceful time with little Cian. I nursed exclusively for about 6 weeks and then started giving Cian a bottle during the day so he would be used to it when he went to his babysitter. We didn’t have to use formula until he was about 10 months thanks to the handy dandy pump. I always felt so awkward at work when someone would call me on speakerphone and could hear the mechanical noises of the pump. I can talk to you right now but I can’t really do anything because my hands are tied up holding these suction things up to my boobs…

    • Marie says:

      Oh, I was on a conference call the other day and the other caller/friend asked what I was doing and I said, “You really want to know?” Ha. And you are a super mom for going 8 months pumping! That’s impressive!

  5. Five months is amazing, Marie! Otis is so lucky to have you as a mom!

  6. […] breastfed as long as I could, and I was happy with what we did, but it does not make sense for every family. […]

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