Wednesday, April 20, 2011

It Does Get Easier

My goal from the beginning has always been to nurse the twins for six months. Last week we hit our halfway mark and I have to say I was elated - both that we made it that far and that I was halfway done with this phase in my postpartum life.

Breastfeeding, while truly a gift, is also a giant pain in the ass. As the parent with the breasts, you shoulder the burden of being the sole provider of nourishment (and sometimes, by default, comfort). It's a lot of stress and pressure and frustration. I honestly think that successful breastfeeders are successful because they are stubborn. Cause this shit's not easy. Does it get easier? Yes, yes it does. Is it ever easy. Um, for me, not so far. Easier. But not easy.

It's always been part of my grand plan to start solids with the twins at four months. Nothing crazy, just the basics and just for practice.

I promised myself that once the kids started taking in solids, that I would also transition to formula and wean from the boob. I have read that once solids are introduced as a regular part of a child's diet (i.e. past the 6 month mark) that the nutritional benefit of breastfeeding decreases. This is because the child starts to get nutrients from the other foods s/he is taking in and because the nutritional composition of a mother's milk decreases exponentially past the 6 month mark. I am not negating the benefits of breastfeeding or extended breastfeeding; I'm just explaining how I initially selected 6 months as my "cut off" date.

Before we started solids it was important to me to find a formula that worked for my kids to make the transition from breast to bottle easier when I am ready. Last week, after a lot of anxiety and anticipation, I gave them their first and only ounce of formula. And guess what? They did fine. Their heads didn't explode, their limbs didn't fall off and they didn't change colors. In fact, they didn't even notice the difference between my milk and formula. Nothing changed at all. Except I felt a little sad that I had built this day up in my head so much and it wasn't even an issue.

I keep trying to come up with a grand plan for what comes next. Right now I think I will continue to EBF for 6 months and start the weaning process then, with the goal of being completely done by 8-9 months. I have no idea if this is *the* plan. My mind changes every day.

What I do know is that I'm not ready to stop yet. The kids are doing great and I'm so proud of their growth. That my body did that. I made them, I grew them in my belly and now I've fed them and helped them grow.

We have a meeting with the creator next month to talk about Russell Sprout #3 and I'm sure that will heavily influence my decision. In order to cycle again two things need to happen: 1.) I need to get a period again and 2.) I need to stop breastfeeding (which I'm pretty sure I'm going to have to do in order for number 1 to happen anyway...)

And, selfishly, I want my body back for just a little while before I leap back into sticking needles in my belly and ass. And I definitely want my body back for a little while before I become pregnant again (if I am blessed enough to achieve a second pregnancy). Not for a crazy amount of time, maybe a month...or three.

So that's that. I stuck with it. I'm still going. I have no idea what comes next. And formula isn't the monster I created in my head. Who knew?

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Back to TOP  

Pin It button on image hover