I have been a breastfeeding mother for almost three months now. Before I had Logan, I didn’t really have expectations about breastfeeding, but I wanted to try it because “breast is best.” There was no reason my body wouldn’t cooperate, and I had no reason not to do it, so because it’s best for baby, I wanted to do it.
I exclusively breastfed Logan for two months. I am very proud of that and amazed at what breast milk can do. Its benefits are incredible, and it is actually very easy. It’s always available, no bottles needed, it is free, always the perfect temperature, and the perfect food for baby. I had already nourished him for nine months in the womb, and if he needed my body for longer, it seemed logical. Why not do it?
After two months, I realized that breastfeeding is actually a lifestyle and more of a burden than I am willing to continue for the long term future. You have to literally sit with baby for an hour of every three (he’s a slow eater, it takes us a long time). I have to organize our schedule so that I’m home when he needs to eat, and it got very time consuming and limiting when I was ready to get out of the house. Because nursing in public isn’t really for me, I like to be home to feed him. That left very little time to get out of the house to run errands either with him, or by myself.
I did start using bottles daily for him so I could escape briefly and food was available for him at home. While bottles are a great alternative, it messes with my own body because the milk is ready for the taking, but baby isn’t there. Luckily, my milk supply is very strong and the only downside was that my boobs felt like they were about to explode (haha, that’s all). Bottles also take extra work of pumping and preparing them and planning for that.
Around Week 9, we introduced formula at the 7 p.m. feeding. I felt that Logan needed a little oomph to help him feel fuller and maybe it would help him sleep longer too. He would always be starving when he ate, no matter the time or how many ounces I could give him. He’s a hungry boy. I have a lot of motherly guilt on switching since breastmilk is working for him. He doesn’t seem to notice a difference, and happily takes whatever he is given, from whomever is holding a bottle.
Now I say he is 83% breastfed. I don’t know when I will wean him more by replacing another feeding with formula. I still really enjoy breastfeeding him and the time we spend together. It is much more special than I imagined. Even though it does take a long time, it’s actually a nice peaceful time where he is happy and I can relax too. Because I can’t decide what to do next, I think it means I’m not yet ready to wean more.
I don’t have a specific goal of how long I’ll continue to breastfeed. For me, I think when it becomes more frustrating and burdensome then I’ll wean more.