I think breastfeeding with my baby has come to an end.

And I’m pretty bummed.

Let me start by saying I am a huge advocate of breastfeeding, but I am a bigger advocate of mothers’ doing what is best for HER family.

I have never been a huge ‘producer’ and Rylan had some trouble gaining weight so around 5 months, we started supplementing with formula.  At that time she was still getting probably 80% breast milk.  But as the weeks went on, she was getting less and less from me, and I was feeling more and more stressed about my supply, her weight, everything. One day I only pumped 2oz first thing in the morning, before leaving for work and I knew it was time to call it quits.

Now, I know that I could have more actively tried to continue breastfeeding.  Fenugreek to increase production, extra pumping sessions to build my supply, more rest, more water, etc, etc.  I have horrible ‘mother’s guilt’ that she did not breast-feed as long as my first child.  But ultimately I took my own advice that I have given others and decided that the stress being able to breastfeed was not worth it.  Rylan got lots of breast milk, she is healthy and thriving, and this was the right decision for us.

I still feel sad that we are done breastfeeding.

I have, however, noticed a few perks of being done.  So rather than beat myself up about stopping, I have decided to focus on those perks.  The silver lining of ending breastfeeding sooner than I thought I would.  Here they are;

  1. I can buy new bras (have you checked out Meghan’s article on bra fitting?)
  2. My husband can’t use the excuse; “wouldn’t it be easier for you to get up with her in the middle of the night?”
  3. I can sleep 20 extra minutes before my early work mornings (since I don’t have to pump).
  4. No more “leaking”
  5. I don’t have to feel guilty about a glass of wine
  6. I don’t have to plan my outfit each day around ‘easy access’
  7. I don’t stress over a few ounces of left over formula. Formula might be expensive, but breast milk is liquid GOLD!
  8. I don’t have to take my pump on an upcoming business trip.
  9. I don’t expose my self to the entire playground while Miss Distracto is eating
  10. Dad gets to do more bedtime routines with her.
  11. Have I mentioned I can pack up my pump…man I hate that thing.
  12. I can spend extra time snuggling and bonding with her at bedtime, not forcing her to nurse longer.

As mothers, we put so much pressure on ourselves and on the job we are doing as parents.  But at the end of the day, we just have to do the best we can and be proud of that.  And if your children are loved, and warm and fed, we all should be proud of the job we are doing.

Now, I am off to buy new bras.