There are so many posts I could write about the things I am struggling with right now. Gosh, I thought going back to an 8-5 work schedule would be the trick, but it's not. Sure, I enjoy the extra hour I get at home in the evening, but it's still not enough.

But I'm rambling. What I'm really struggling with right now is breastfeeding. I know that none of you can give me an answer about what's right for me & my family, but I really just need a place to vent. And something to look back on over the next few months, when I guarantee that I'll have these same feelings and emotions several times.

I've never made it a secret that I didn't intend to breastfeed at all, let alone more than six weeks, and definitely not eight months. But it's worked ... rather well. Whenever my supply has dipped, I've always been able to boost it back up. I've not once had to supplement with formula, and I love having less bottles to wash, saving money, and the "ease" of nursing.

I can't put my finger on the exact reason, but I'm just really not feeling it any more. Honestly? I'm sick of pumping. I abhor hearing the whine of the pump. I'm sick of being the first one out of bed. I hate having to be careful of what I eat & drink. I hate stressing over my supply and ensuring that he has plenty to eat. Most of all, I am not loving that my little man is beginning to use his teeth while nursing, and is just so squirmy.

Our nursing times used to be so sweet. We would sit in the glider and he would just stare in my eyes and it was one of my favorite times of the day. No matter what, no one could take that time away from me & my boy.

At this point, I'm just not sure what to do. I've considered exclusively pumping, but that would be a pain in the rear, take up more time in the morning/evening, and be more dishes, so it's probably a definite no.

I can give myself an attitude adjustment and tell myself to keep trucking on. I've made it over 8 months, so I'm 2/3 of the way there. It's working, so why quit now? Plus, unless there are any unforeseeable circumstances, my freezer stash will probably last for two to three weeks of "daytime" feedings, so come November, there's a good chance I can ditch the pump and just begin nursing morning & evening.

And of course, I can just throw in the towel right now. There is some "mommy guilt" associated with that. Plus the hit our bank account will take. But gosh, the freedom I feel it would give me would probably be priceless. No more wearing "nursing/pumping appropriate" clothing. No more having to find the right place to pump. No more taking the time out of my day for the pumping and all the feedings when we are at home. And no more having to swat away Cooper every morning while I pump because he is enthralled with the cords.

I've been working on this post for a few days. It's been ... a struggle ... to say the least. And now, I think I've decided to just pull on my big girl panties and continue as long as is possible. It's working, it's free, and it really is what's best for my little Cooper.

I can't guarantee that, come Nov. 23, I'll still be nursing. But, I also can't guarantee that I won't continue with one or two nursing sessions beyond his first birthday. I can say that those times when I'm nursing and our eyes lock, however, make it all worth it.

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  1. I know it's probably one tough decision to make! Just know whatever decision you make is for the best for your family! No one can tell you what to do! You know!
    Just know that I'll be thinking about you! :)

  2. I always felt like I got ripped off a little in the breastfeeding dept. Grayson wouldn't latch right (not entirely his fault thanks to the small tongue tie) but he had a lazy latch too. And then, when all would be working he'd go to sleep. I'd end up letting him nurse 40 minutes because of him falling to sleep so much and even then? I'd take him off and he'd wake up and scream because he was hungry and didn't eat enough because he kept going to sleep.

    I had to pump. And doing that alone plus having him at work meant stress and no supply and I had to supplement. Now I only supplement in the middle of the night because going downstairs to warm milk once he's already crying (because we were sleeping and that's what wakes me up) is just a pain and I don't want to make him cry longer than he has to.. and I can't nurse.. so at night we supplement (maximum of 2 bottles) and all day he gets pumped milk. For us.. it's what has to be done.

    You'll figure out what has to be done for you and him. But I know the stress of it, too. I hope you can get to a better place with what you're doing or figure out what you need to do to stress less. Hugs!

  3. Oh man, sorry friend. I don't know what to tell you… I'd like to think that I would want to save Brandon and I more money in the long run trying to hold out as long as I could, but then I know myself, and I'd be selfish and want to quit. I'd probably want a beer or margarita too ha!

    Praying for you, Michelle! :)

  4. Hugs to you girl! I think what you are feeling is completely normal and I don't blame you one bit for hating the pump! I also loathed pumping and I know there is no way I would have made it as long if I had to pump. You have done an amazing job and should be proud of yourself no matter when you decided that your breastfeeding journey is over!

  5. You've done a fantastic job, and it sounds like you're weighing all of the pros and cons. Not that it helps, but your feelings are "normal"...whatever normal is. I thought those things and have heard many others say the same. I felt a big relief when I stopped pumping completely and nursed 1-3 times/day when Tully was around 12 months. And remember breastfeeding isn't all or nothing and some is better than none. Do what works for you and Coop. I should also add that although I wanted to toss in the towel many times, I have been an absolute emotional wreck, since Tully weaned over a month ago. I miss it and him so, so much. Like I turn into a blubbering mess every time I think about it. [wipes tears off keyboard] Nursing a toddler (on my schedule!) was such a rewarding experience and was so amazing and different than nursing a baby.

    Have you checked out Kellymom for tips on dealing with biting? I always had to remove Tully, and it stopped pretty quickly. I also got good a knowing when it was about to happen to prevent it.KellyMom: When Baby Bites

    What specifically are you avoiding eating and drinking? Does Coop have a food allergy or reflux? Usually babies have outgrown reflux by now. If there are no allergies, I can't think of anything that's off limits, as far as your diet is concerned. Hot, spicy, dairy, you can have it all. If you are craving a tasty adult beverage, you can absolutely have one. Alcohol clears your milk just like it does your blood, and the amount a baby can get is really, really diluted. I usually waited an hour or 1.5 hrs before feeding Tully or pumping, so I could keep the milk.

    From Kellymom
    There is no need to pump & dump milk after drinking alcohol, other than for mom’s comfort. In general, if you are sober enough to drive, you are sober enough to breastfeed. Less than 2% of the alcohol consumed by the mother reaches her blood and milk. Alcohol peaks in mom’s blood and milk approximately 1/2-1 hour after drinking (but there is considerable variation from person to person, depending upon how much food was eaten in the same time period, mom’s body weight and percentage of body fat, etc.). Alcohol does not accumulate in breastmilk, but leaves the milk as it leaves the blood; so when your blood alcohol levels are back down, so are your milk alcohol levels.

    Hope that helps!


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