My little boyman is now 6 months old. Someone please tell me how the frick that happened.
In many ways, I feel like we won the baby lottery. I got exactly the features I had hoped for (dad’s blue eyes, my strawberry blonde hair, overall cuteness). He’s always been a champion sleeper. He’s never been picky about bottles, formula, or pacis. Most of all, I am amazed at how happy his default disposition is. He’s usually making eye contact, smiling, cooing, laughing, but what amazes me the most is that even when he’s crying or whining or just generally upset, we can usually still make him smile or laugh, even if it’s just for a moment. He wants to be happy even when he’s so hungry or tired that he’s cranky. I love this guy and he amazes me every day.
That said, our hardest struggle by far has been breastfeeding.
Dylan didn’t latch with any consistency until day 8, and up until then he would only latch in front of the lactation consultant. She manhandled my boob and smashed Dylan’s face into it, and for some reason it worked…but the second we got home and I tried the same rough technique, he’d push and struggle and kick and scream at my boob for 20 minutes until I was crying and gave up.
My milk came in rather late, and even then I wasn’t making very much. All this created a yucky feedback loop/catch 22: Dylan wasn’t latching, and so my production wouldn’t increase, but my production was already late and low, and so Dylan didn’t want to latch cuz he knew he wouldn’t get much. Talk about frustrating.
I did everything I could to increase my supply and nothing helped very much. Nevertheless, I kept at it and Dylan and I slowly worked our way into a routine that worked for us that included breastfeeding, pumping, and formula.
After 6 months of hard work, I think we’re at the end of breastfeeding. My supply recently dipped even more, and lately Dylan’s been getting frustrated. The experience isn’t fun or cuddly anymore and I have done all I could to get him this far.
I’m pretty sad about stopping. Before giving birth, I had assumed that I’d be breastfeeding as long as I was at home with Dylan during the day. I’m currently fighting guilt and telling it to take a hike. I’m frustrated with my body, for not doing what I expected or wanted.
There’s a part of me that feels some relief about the decision to stop. Breastfeeding and pumping has been hard work and very time consuming, and I am looking forward to daily life being that much simpler. But, I’m gonna miss the cuddles, the oxytocin rush, and the feeling of motherly pride that came with it.
I keep reminding myself that Dylan’s gonna be just fine. Like I said above – he’s crazy happy. He’s such a good kid. We also just started solids and so far there isn’t a food he hasn’t not liked – that’s my boy.
And…now that I think about it, I’m gonna be just fine, too. Just like everything else, we’re getting through this together, my little boy and I.
Was breastfeeding hard for you, too? I’d love to hear your stories. Thanks for reading!