Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Bottle Drama

Williamsburg, 2012

So lately I've been pumping one bottle a day for Will to give Axel at around 11 p.m. so that I can get a little physical break from being the babe's sole food source. Even if I'm not asleep at the time, I feel like it's nice bonding time for Will and the little guy, especially when he's been at work all day. And it gives me hope that Axel will do well switching from breast to bottle and back again when we have sitters down the line.

It's been going pretty well so far.

Um, until last night.

I blithely went off to bed leaving Will with a 4 oz. bottle in the fridge. About forty minutes later, I hear some angry screeching from the living room. Shortly thereafter, Will comes into the bedroom holding our soaking wet and very upset son. Turns out I had put the nipple on incorrectly and half of the bottle had poured out all over the baby leaving him both sticky and starving. We took an emergency midnight bath with drowned rat Axel furrowing his brow and looking at me like "You have got to be kidding me, people!"

Anyway, we survived that little parenting fail. But it has me thinking about the perils of breastfeeding and about pumping in general.

We've had a relatively easy time on both counts, but I will say it sometimes feels claustrophobic to be your child's only source of nutrition. I was reading this blog post and could absolutely relate. Even though the pump is artificial and fairly clinical, it does give you a great sense of freedom (assuming you don't go and dump that freedom on your child's head.)

There's been a lot of talk lately about a breastfeeding backlash (like this Observer article.) It's true, in New York at least, even thinking about using formula, like once in an emergency, makes you feel like you're contemplating feeding your kid Draino. There's just so much guilt and if, say, you can't breastfeed, you must feel like the target of a lot of judgment. Obviously breastfeeding is preferable (and I'm a big proponent.) But it's rough that moms feel so much guilt over pumping for convenience's sake or offering formula even in rare instances. My pediatrician had to remind me the other day that it's not, you know, poison!

1 comment:

  1. I feel for moms who have trouble with breast feeding. MiniMe and I had a lot of problems at the start and when the nurse in the hospital told me we would have to supplement with formula in order to make sure she peed before leaving (and therefore knowing her kidneys were a-ok), I broke down crying and sobbing about how I was a failure of a mother. That was day 2 of being a mom. We eventually got it, but it's not as easy as "something so natural" should be- at least not for everyone. There's plenty of guilt to be felt as a parent without other people judging one's ability to lactate.


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