let that shit go (part two)
this is a follow up to a piece i wrote on 8.3.2017: let that shit go.
the birth of my son: my water broke at 35 weeks. my baby was upside down and delivered via cesarean section. because he was early and tiny with a weak latch and because i was overwhelmed and worried about him gaining weight – my son and i had an extremely difficult time breastfeeding. i pumped as much as i could and supplemented with formula. four weeks later i threw in the towel, packed away the breast pump, and started buying similac in bulk.
the birth of my daughter: irregular but frequent contractions for literally months before my daughter was born two days after her due date and only sixteen months after her brother. she was small and positioned head down, which made the unmedicated vaginally delivery i hoped for a reality. she nursed moments later and didn’t stop until just a few days ago.
two babies… two very opposite experiences.
with my second child i found myself with an over supply of breastmilk and a baby who (after a few days of getting the hang of it) nursed easily and painlessly. we fed on demand as often and as long as she wanted. my son was patient and sweet (most days) while i fed his sister. our journey was beautiful.
yes there were clogs.
and cluster feeds.
and a very short lived biting phase…
but my girl grew strong.
breastfeeding – this time around – was the right decision for our family.
last week we started introducing whole milk to our daughter. we also slowed down nursing and instead offered milk (both breast and cow) to her in bottles. she has been transitioning like a champ.
yesterday i realized somewhere along the line my daughter and i nursed for our final time.
there was no awareness of the moment while it was happening.
life simply moved on.
life can be brutal like that.
but i do remember the moment.
it was just before dawn. the curtain was pushed back enough to let in a sliver of light. my husband slept next to us and our dog positioned himself in a tight ball behind my knees. my daughter curled up next to me and wrapped her dimpled fists around my shirt. it was sleepy and hazy and lovely.
i am tremendously proud of myself and my daughter for seeing our breastfeeding experience through to the end. (we did it jay!) looking back i am also proud of myself for having the clarity to switch to exclusively formula feeding my son two years ago.
today my formula fed cesarean delivered two year old and my breastfed vaginally delivered one year old are both thriving. they are healthy, active, strong people and are both exceptionally adventurous eaters. there is not a moment of either experience i would change for the world.