So, I am really frustrated with breastfeeding. That is what this post will be about, so you men folk will probably be bored.
I told myself when Claire was born, I would definitely try breastfeeding, and my goal was 6 months. Most women don't make it that long, if they do it at all. (Of course, then there are the weird ones who breastfeed until baby is able to undo the buttons themselves. That's not for me.) So 6 months. And right from the start, I've had troubles. She supplemented formula in the hospital, but when we got home, she was doing okay. She was good for about two months. By her two month checkup, we had gone through one sample can of formula for various reasons. Not too shabby. But after her two month point, she started wanting more formula, more often. At three months, I told WIC she was only partially breastfed, so we could get some formula. This month, we've gone through three small cans (thank heaven for WIC). And it is so frustrating. Part of the problem is she has a really short attention span when it comes to eating. She will nurse contentedly for about 5 minutes, then start pulling and backing off and just being a pain. So I switch sides, and she will be content for a few minutes, and start again with the bratiness. So I switch again. She is happy for a minute. Back she goes to side two. By this point, I am frustrated, so I close up shop. If she is still hungry, she gets some formula. (She does the same kind of stuff with the bottle. She yells at it (while eating, weirdo) and talks to it and grumbles and makes a big mess and moves all over and watches the tv, or the dogs, or daddy walking by or a fly on the wall or whatever, and other times, she just downs it.) I'm pretty sure there is still milk available, I think she is just getting tired of how hard it is. The bottle is much easier, especially since I bought faster flow nipples. Maybe that was my mistake? Since we got back from our trip, she has been REALLY hungry. Sunday night, I had a thing to do, so she was home with daddy. She ate 11 ounces of formula in an hour. 11!! Of course, she hadn't really eaten all day. (Not that it wasn't offered. It was. Repeatedly. She didn't want it.) Saturday night, after nursing, she ate 8 ounces. Maybe it's just a growing phase. But, the part that makes me really want to wean her is this: her poo has changed from breastfed poo to formula poo. If you don't know the difference, it is huge. Breastfed isn't exactly pleasant, but it isn't too bad. It's not terribly stinky. It cleans up pretty easily. Formula poo is STINKY! (Like, someone open a window, what died in here?!? stinky.) So she has gone from getting more food from me to getting more from formula. So I feel like I have already passed the point of usefulness. Does that make sense? If she is getting more nutrition from the formula anyway, why am I putting myself through the misery of trying to nurse her, when it is so frustrating anyway. She doesn't eat formula with every meal yet, but it is getting closer to that. Usually her first meal of the day is just milk (since it is abundant after 12 hours of production). But most of the meals after that, she wants more than what I provide. So I don't know. I'm going to talk to the pediatrician next week and see what she thinks. If it was up to WIC, I would only breastfeed for a year, and more power to the women who can. I just don't think I am up to the task (unless I want to nurse every hour. No thank you.) If it was up to me, I would only be breastfeeding too. You can't beat free nutrition and a reason to cuddle with baby. Maybe the next baby will have an easier time of it. Maybe Claire is just too active, too wiggly, too hungry, too something that breastfeeding isn't working for her. All I want is what is best for her. If the pediatrician thinks I should keep going, I will, but unless something drastic changes, I am totally weaning her at 6 months. I am also thinking of starting to wean her from the bottle at 6 months, and go straight to the sippy cup. We will see when we get closer to that though. That might have to wait until 8 months. Losing the boob, the bottle, and starting real food might be too much for her. Or, it might be just enough. She is a very smart kid. I can tell already she will always be a handful. Sunday, she was laying on a blanket in church, with a toy in front of her, and she realized she could pull the blanket and bring the toy closer. Too smart for her own good.