When I found out I was pregnant for the fourth time the aspect that caused the most tears and frustration was trying to breastfeed my infant daughter. When that second line turned pink, she wasn't even six-months-old yet. I was able to nurse my other two children with relative ease until their first birthday. And now, here we were, not even to the halfway mark.
When my milk supply dropped, I immediately started solid foods to make sure she was getting "enough." But every nursing mother knows that food and nutrition are only one part of breastfeeding. The comfort and bonding part are just as important to mother and baby.
The bedtime routine was the worst. She would get her dinner, have a bath, we would read a Sandra Boynton book and then we'd settle in "the chair." She'd latch on and after a minute or so of some fierce sucking, she'd throw her head back and cry out in frustration. I'd switch sides and try again. We'd do this over and over until finally she was able to get a tiny amount. It was enough to calm her down and ready her for bed. And then I would pray that she wouldn't wake in the middle of the night because if she did, I knew she would want to nurse and my body wouldn't be able to provide her anything until morning.
As she got older and we started introducing a larger variety of solid foods, she became less interested in nursing. In fact, within the past month she's all out refused me. The only time she wants to nurse now is in the morning right after she's woken up.
During this period I was lucky to have support from some pretty amazing doctors. I have heard stories from other parents about being warned, reprimanded even, for not "following the rules." Most doctors will recommend breastmilk or formula until age 1. No exceptions. And Katherine was even more of a concern as she is on the lighter side of things. At her nine-month check last week she weighed in at just over 15 pounds; the third percentile.
The problem, thus far, is that Katherine loathes formula. We've tried it in every form you can think of. She spits it out, bats the bottle or cup away and scrunches up her eyebrows as she glares at you as if to say, "Are you being serious right now?!"
"Look at her!" Her doctor exclaimed. "She's perfect. Yes, small. But healthy!"
Thank goodness for doctors like these.
She relieved me of my guilt and frustration. Her instructions were this: nurse when you can, forget about the formula and don't be afraid to add butter or heavy cream to her food! We'll be able to start whole cow's milk when she turns 11 months.
Earth's Best Organic Infant Formula is the first FDA approved formula in the organic segment. The Sensitivity Infant Formula offers a unique organic whey protein formulation. And because the formula is lower in lactose, it's gentler on babies with sensitive tummies.
Earth's Best is offering one of my readers one free 23.2oz container of Organic Sensitivity Infant Formula. To enter, simply leave a comment on this post. (Make sure you include your email address so I can contact you if you're a winner.) Deadline to enter is Monday, August 6 at noon (Central Time).
If you don't currently have a bottlefed child at home, I encourage you to enter anyway. Most people know at least one person who would appreciate a free container of formula. And if not, I've found out first-hand how thankful local food shelves or pregnancy crisis centers are to receive formula donations.
* Earth's Best has provided me with one container of formula for review purposes and one to give away. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.**This contest is now closed. The winner is #4 - @Carla**