If you’re a mom or friends with a lot of moms on Facebook, you may have noticed that there’s a lot of chatter about National Breast Feeding Week. When I dreamt about planning my family (you know, when everything in my life was going to work out exactly as perfectly as it should) my plan included children. And it included breastfeeding. To me, breastfeeding is beautiful. The idea of having that intimate bonding time feeding your child food that comes from YOUR OWN BODY is incredible. It’s proof to me that God truly had everything covered when creating men and women. But, I don’t think it deserves its own week of praise.
So, my disclaimer for this blog post is this: I think mothers who choose to breastfeed their kids are great, and quite honestly, I’m very jealous of you ladies. I just don’t understand why moms who bottle feed aren’t praised for a week as well. Also, I know Bridgette has her own breastfeeding story, but here are my thoughts as someone who has never tried to breastfeed.
My child has been bottle fed since birth. Makes sense since he was adopted, but I never really had the choice of whether or not to breastfeed him. Ok, ok, ok, I KNOW I had different options besides formula including using milk from a milk bank or figuring out if my body would actually be able to breastfeed, but, to me, those were never really viable options. I know my son never had any of my nutrients while he was in the womb, and I know he doesn’t have any of my DNA, so selfishly, I didn’t want him to have another woman’s breast milk. Maybe to some people it doesn’t matter, but to me, the idea wasn’t even going to get a second glance. As for figuring out whether I could force my body to breastfeed…with my premature ovarian failure, my hormones are all out of whack. I’ve been going to a doctor to try to regulate things, and it’s slowly working, but the idea of messing with my hormones even more to trick my body into producing breast milk made me almost cry. So, formula it is!
And you know what? Vincent is thriving! He’s growing like a weed and eats beautifully. It’s been very nice for my husband and step son as well because they can feed him too. Z loves feeding his little brother, and I know my husband loves the time he spends feeding Vinny as well. This goes for Nonna, Gramps, and MawMaw also…all the grandparents can get in on feeding Vincent.
As for the closeness and bonding, it’s still there. It’s still there when Vinny smiles at me with his bottle in his mouth. It’s still there when he grabs my finger and hangs onto it the whole time he’s eating. It’s still there when he falls asleep in the middle of eating and we can just snuggle. I’m still able to bond even when feeding with a bottle.
So, breast feeders, bottle feeders, and anyone inbetween, why can’t the week be baby feeding week? And we can celebrate however people choose (or end up) feeding their child because ultimately, who are we to judge?