Saturday, February 2, 2013


it's been a long hard road with rorie. one of the hardest thing for me, being her mother, has been feeding her. it was so easy at first. she was the most wonderful baby. minutes after being born we tried breastfeeding and every nurse was surprised at how naturally she nursed. it wasn't stressful or painful and she was always happy. that didn't last for long. at home, the pain of the beginning of breastfeeding set in and the lack of sleep made my attitude toward nursing very negative. i remember yelling at aaron after he told me i could take a break. all i saw was an entire year ahead of me of non-stop nursing- there was no break. and at that time it seemed like a jail sentence. oh silly me. to be able to go back to that time and savor it more. the time when i could comfort my child with nothing but myself. now we search for "paci" and rush to make bottles.

rorie didn't continue to be good at nursing and it was so confusing to me. what was i doing wrong?! her latch became on and off and she started to take in a lot of air (something that we continue to deal with now). all this air had to get out somehow- so her burps were painful and the air that continued down in her tummy caused her to have horrible stomach pains until she was able to release them as gas hours later. she began to spit up like it was her job. sometimes it was projectile, sometimes it just came out dripping. either way- it was too much and it was painful for her and for me. i felt like breastfeeding her was pointless because she wasn't getting anything. and she wasn't. she got to the point where she wasn't gaining any weight and she was officially called "failure to thrive". exactly what you want to hear as a first time mother. i tested her once. i burped her over a bowl after giving her 4oz of breast milk. 3 oz came right back up. that's bad news bears. to top it off, she also had acid reflux. awesome. not only is she spitting up too much, but it's burning her throat as it comes up.

well, that brought us to a GI doctor who had us put her on elecare. A $50 a can formula for babies with severe cow's milk protein allergies. awesome. now we have a sick baby and the only way to feed her is to drain our bank account. the formula is special because the milk protein is partially digested so it's almost impossible to be allergic to it. it took a while for it to work, but it finally did.

this is when i stopped breastfeeding. i did this cold turkey. the pain emotionally and physically that came with it is comparable to the pain of giving birth to her. i didn't plan to do it this way. no. and i wouldn't wish it upon anyone. it was not how i wanted our breastfeeding to go. my poor skin and bones baby developed a cold. a runny nose and severe congestion paired with spitting up constantly meant that i could not put her down at all. she ate and slept in my arm. i held her constantly for 15 days straight. she had to be held upright in order to be fed and in order to breathe. horrible timing. for this is when i was supposed to be pumping in the hopes that i would be able to get all the cow's milk protein out of my system in order to nurse her. the pain set in and i knew needed to pump to my body would know to keep producing milk, but i could not and would not put her down to suffer anymore. so i held my baby tight and watch the dream of breastfeeding until at least 1 go out the window. i was also on a diet of potatoes and pears- eliminating anything else she could possibly be allergic to. i was a zombie. i'm not sure if zombies are what they show in movies. i don't think there's any blood or gore or any of that cinematic hoopla. i think zombies are just mommies with sick babies.

in the end, rorie is on a less expensive formula, alimentum, and completely bottle fed. i bought her some cute bottles from life factory which make me feel better about having to stop breastfeeding. its a burden on our family financially because we did not see this coming or plan on formula feeding at all and alimentum is still much more expensive than regular milk-based formula.

but i have some wonderful friends. the picture above is my stocked cupboard of alimentum- all from them (and this isn't even all of it!).  i also recieved two cans in the mail from a complete internet stranger who said she was blessed to have a baby who didn't have to have this kind of formula. i am truly blessed. thank you to everyone who has helped us with rorie. thank you. thank you.

i still struggle emotionally with the fact that i am unable to breastfeed rorie. my heart hurts when i see another mother feeding their child. i now have to lug around a thermos of warm water, bottles, and formula. but my baby is healthy- i have to remind myself of that. it hurts me when other mothers stress how important breastfeeding is and that it is "the best". i know that it is, but i know for a fact that it was not "the best" for us and that this is how it was meant to be for rorie. i only wish that mothers who breastfeed would understand the heartache, stress, and pain that some mothers have to go through who are formula feeding their babies. understand that there are even more factors to my story that made it impossible to continue to breastfeed. understand that i didn't want it this way. but i've got to focus on the good stuff. because my baby's pretty spunky. and she's adorably stylish. and her blue eyes will knock you out. and i've got the best friends in the world! they buy me formula (:

1 comment:

  1. Hugs!! So sorry your bf experiencing didn't go as planned. Thanks for linking up with the Tuesday Baby Link Up! I hope you'll join us again this week!