No matter what the reason, we’ve all experienced Mom Guilt at some point in our lives. The most recent for me has been….NURSING! I really contemplated whether or not to write a post about this for fear of being judged. But I figured, if I was feeling this, I’m sure a million other moms are going through the same thing!
With Turner I had no problems. He ate just fine, and I nursed him for a year. Gracie is a bit different! She isn’t as big of an eater. She takes in about 2 oz per feeding and I nurse her 6 times a day. She’s now 5 months old and has gone from the 15th percentile for weight, to the 6th! My ped wasn’t worried because she’s super happy and sleeps like a champ. He just told me to keep an eye on her weight.
When she was born, I was pumping, in addition to nursing her, and produced at least 5 or 6 oz each time. So I was able to stock up the freezer! Last week, I noticed my freezer stash had dwindled down quite a bit! I nearly had a panic attack! It never occurred to me that I would run out of breast-milk! What’s happened is, because she doesn’t eat that much while I nurse her, I only pump about 2 ounces. When I give her a pumped bottle, I use 4 ounces. So, I’m not producing enough to replenish my freezer supply. And, over the months, it finally added up!
I started asking my mom friends what sort of formula they use. I had all different options to read up on. Last week, Gracie and I took a stroll through Target to read the ingredients and compare every formula created. Enter the dreaded Mom Guilt. I literally almost burst into tears in the middle of the store. So many thoughts…Gracie is so tiny, how can I put anything so unnatural into her body? I have failed as a mother! How could I do this to her and not Turner? I mean, look at this face!
So, before going down the formula road, I tried (and still do) these options (ask your Dr before doing anything because clearly I’m not one!):
So, after trying natural remedies (and I’m still not giving up by the way), talking with friends who know how granola I am, and lots of praying, I decided to give myself a break. I’m in a different place than I was three years ago when Turner was a baby. I didn’t have a toddler and I didn’t own a business. So, what I will do is nurse her like normal and pump like normal. On the days I give her a bottle, I mix 2 oz of breast-milk with 2 oz of Honest Formula because to me, some breast-milk is better than none!
So, for those of you who really put pressure on yourselves to be perfect, give yourselves a break! We have a million and one things to accomplish in a day. Being hard on ourselves shouldn’t be one of them! And at the end of the day, loving our babies is the most important part!