Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Breast is Best

[sleeping off another happy milk-induced coma...]

Various sources (the hospital and others) have given me samples of baby formula. I have no intention of using them, so I thought I'd see if I could pass them on to someone who would. A neighbor of mine has a 4 month old who formula fed, so I asked her if she would like them. She said sure, but was I sure I didn't want to keep them around, just in case..."because sometimes a nursing baby will decide they don't like nursing anymore and then you have to switch."
I was flabbergasted! I realize that there are times when a baby truly cannot be nursed--my older son did not have a mother for half of his infancy for example--but to give up on nursing just because the baby went on a little nursing strike... that's so sad! I guess I am very blessed to be educated about breastfeeding--I thought it was common sense stuff, but apparently it is not so common, at least in our current culture. I know I am blessed to have good support from spouse and family and friends and La Leche League--I guess many people don't have that either. Still, I cannot imagine giving up the ease and simplicity of nursing for the hassle (and inferior nutrition) of formula unless there were truly no other option! Right now I am actually pumping my extra milk and giving it to a friend who is struggling to provide enough for her infant. I am so blessed to have enough to be able to do that, and hope that others would share with me if I were ever in that position.
It's true that there are times when I feel rather like a cow...just giving out milk all day long...but at the same time I am awed by the miracle that is my body--God made me able to do so many amazing things! Not only can I grow a human from a cluster of cells, not only can I deliver that human into the world, but I can even create and give the perfect food for him. Wow. And when my baby slides off my nipple, with milk streaming over his chin and his eyes rolling back into his head in the perfect bliss of a milk those moments I have to wonder why anyone would *choose* another way.


Heidi said...

Oh, I so agree with you!!! I am SO glad I was 100% committed to breastfeeding my first baby - it could have been easy to quit with all the negative people around me during that time.

But I stuck it out, and here we are on baby number 4 who will probably nurse past her second birthday! (I hope! ;) )

Jessica said...

You are so very right. I especially agree about the convenience! Our family and another couple went to a baseball game when our babies were just a couple months old and it was so very nice to not have to climb over everyone and go searching for hot water. I don't think anyone even noticed that we nursed our babies right in our seats.
Also, it is so very worth sticking out the initial soreness. When I started with my first baby I was sooo sore, but we finally learned how to nurse correctly and with the second one it was a peice of cake!
Sorry I'm long winded, but you are so right!!!

Anonymous said...

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