This is a wired post to write. It was difficult for me to even think about ending my breastfeeding journey. I have struggled with breastfeeding with my last 3 babies. They all started dropping weight just a couple months in. I had to give them formula for them to thrive. It made my feel like I failed them as a mom (read: To The Mom Who Feels Like She Failed At Breastfeeding).
Then along came Eleanor. If you were looking in from the outside you would probably think breastfeeding was going great. And that would be a pretty fair assumption. The actual act of breastfeeding was going amazing this time. We had no thrush, no cracked nipples, and she gained weight perfectly. She was thriving.
But the problem was that I was not. Instead of bonding with my baby, I would cringe whenever I heard her cry for milk. I didn’t enjoy having to stop everything I was doing to nurse her. I looked at everyday as an endless cycle of feedings. I was stressed and tapped out physically and emotionally.
This affected how I was a mom to my older girls as well. I was not as patient. Instead of enjoying our time together, I was living in survival mode. I was only trying to get to the next event instead of actually enjoying the moments in-between, My PPA was getting worse too.
I was not being the mom I wanted to be. The mom I should be. The mom I was called to be for these girls I have been blessed with. I knew what the issue was. The issue was nursing. So I took the plunge and weaned Eleanor onto formula.
Now Eleanor is taking formula on a full time bases. Now I actually enjoy feeding her. I’m bonding with her while holding her while she eats. I no longer cringe at her cry for milk. I’m more patient and way less stressed out. It’s like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I enjoy being a mother more. And most important, I’m enjoying the memories I’m making with my girls.
I am much more the mom I want to be for my girls. Stopping breastfeeding has defiantly made me a better mom.