Thursday, July 7, 2011

Winding down...

I know that people have strong opinions on the whole issue of breastfeeding, formula, weaning etc.  Please know that I believe to each his own.

I enjoy breastfeeding LM.  It's been a really smooth process amazingly....I was sure there'd be problems.  But--he latched right on and never looked back.  It's always been my plan that I would transition him to formula when it was time for school to start up. Yes, I know I could pump. But the age group I teach is high maintenance and requires a lot of energy and time at the start of the school year. Most years, the first week of school usually results in me grabbing a quick snack while running around on my one break of the day (we don't get a second prep until later in the year when we feel the kids are more self-sufficient for not all of the teachers to be there). I don't sit down and honestly, there's just not going to be time to pump on the one break. I'm trying to be realistic. The last thing I want is for LM to be relying on pumped breastmilk (my freezer stash is pathetic---I can only pump about 3oz at a time, on a good day) at daycare and my supply tank.  I have panic attacks at the thought of leaving him at daycare after so long home together, so I cannot imagine trying to transition to formula in the midst of all of that. 

He'll be 5 months three days before school starts. We plan to start solids at 6 months. (I totally get that this statement doesn't fit here...but I wanted to include it and couldn't figure out a good spot for it).

Once things settle down at school, I'll still have just the one late morning break. And I could pump...but honestly---this is my one time a day to sit and talk with my team, get things done etc...and I know how stressed I get when I lose this. I don't want to be a stressed, mean teacher...and as a result, a cranky mommy.  I get that some people might view this as selfish....and it probably is. But, it's something I've been really really thinking about and I feel comfortable with my decision.

Guilty, but comfortable. 

I'll miss the time with LM but he loves bottles and will take them from me, so hopefully we'll still get our snuggle time. Plus, it'll help TH and him get some much needed snuggle time as he'll be back to school too.

So right now, I'm exploring the idea of weaning (without feeling like my bo.obs will explode) and learning about formula/bottles etc. It's a lot to learn about....and I feel a little overwhelmed. I'm the kind of person who doesn't like not being "good" at something right away so I have anxiety about the transition.  I'd love advice from anyone who has weaned (un)successfully and anyone who can give me tips about formula/bottle and all of the life lessons you've learned.

We go to the pedi next week for our 4 month so I'll talk with her about it then and get her advice too. But--you know I love the real mama advice.

So we'll start soon....but until then, I'm just going to enjoy my time breastfeeding LM and prepare ourselves for this new transition. And's a big one.


  1. yay! i'm glad breastfeeding has been a good experience for you. i never weaned because louise has always been formula fed, breastfeeding didn't work out for us. when she was younger we gave her what they gave her at the hospital, which was enfamil, but eventually we switched to generic because all formula has to meet the same fda regulations, including generics, and they cost almost half as much. here's is a website that has good information about generic formula:

  2. I don't think you need to feel guilty at all!!! You're doing what's right for your family and obviously you've put a lot of thought and love into the decision. I cannot imagine trying to pump as a teacher. I never even ate lunch sitting down, I just can't see how it wold be possible.

    I wish I had some advice for you about weaning, we're right at that point now with Bean too. I'd love to hear what other people have to say though because it's a step I'm nervous about too.

    It's so funny though, you're right that people have definite ideas about these things, because I feel weird telling people that I'm still breastfeeding Bean at 14 months. I don't feel like there's anything wrong with it, but you're right, people have their opinions and don't mind sharing them. I'm not sure why everyone feels like this stuff is their business!

  3. @katery--Thank you for the website about formula. It was really helpful! It gave me a thought to think about--switching to formula will be a big hit to the budget.

    @Ordinary Girl--I appreciate the commiserating about how pumping at school would be an obstacle! It's been a hard choice but I know it's the right one (at least it better be!). People really do have such varied opinions about breastfeeding...some think we do it too long, while others not long enough. It's really such a personal decision. I wish everyone would just be respectful about decisions like that. I'm good enough at criticizing myself without their help :-)

  4. Don't feel guilty at all! (And I say that knowing that I will feel guilty about the same thing...haha) I'm in a similar situation: a teacher returning to school at the end of August after being off since the beginning of April, about to wean my baby even though I don't really want to just yet. My little guy will be almost four months by the time I go back, but I breastfed my daughter for a little over a year so it's going to be tough to stop so soon with my son. But, it's what will be better for me (and us) in the end because it would be so stressful trying to work in pumping breaks throughout the day.

    My only advice (and what I'm planning to do) is just to do it super gradually so that your body adapts with as little discomfort as possible. My only experience with weaning was after my daughter had already been eating solids for a while and so my supply had already gone down quite a bit since she didn't need as much from me at that point.

  5. @Ashley--
    Thank you for your advice. It's nice to know there's another person in the same situation. I've gotten a lot of flack from people in my family who feel like I should keep going but don't understand my difficulties at the idea of pumping at school. I think we're going to start introducing formula on Wednesday (our pedi appt is Tuesday). Big step!!!


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