This is going to be a different kind of blog than I normally write.
I feel like I am constantly having to explain why I parent the way I do. Which I am fine with. The things I do now, definitely are not the norm of when I was growing up, and I realize that its odd for other people too. People always look at me like I have a third eye when I mention cloth diapering, exclusively pumping, and now making baby food from scratch. I always get the "But isn't that more work" questions... yes... but its worth it and I'm going to explain why.
Im not going to cover cloth diapers again :) I have 2 other posts dedicated to why I cloth diaper. You can find them here ...and here...
So breastfeeding did not work for us. We had a very very hard time from the start. Rowen would not latch at the hospital. The hospital nurses were...well... we did not have a good experience at all with them trying to help. It was very traumatic and really made me scared to even try again.. But.. when we got home we tried. We got shields and it was going well for a while. Then, I had to go back to work and school when Rowen was 2 weeks old. She was getting bottles practically all day. She developed a preference for bottles and decided that she hated boobs. After many many nights of crying meltdowns on both of our parts, I decided it wasn't worth it. She wasn't happy, I wasn't happy, and we stopped.
So what exactly is exclusive pumping? Well, instead of nursing Rowen, I spend about 20 minutes, 5 times a day, hooked up to a breast pump. I'm a lucky that we do not have to supplement with formula and she gets only breast milk.
So, basically we do the work of both breastfeeding moms and formula feeding moms. Its a lot of work. But, its what works best for my family.
When we first found out about Rowen, we were terrified. How were we going to afford to feed a baby? Breast feeding is free. I knew that we had to make it work. When it didn't, we had to figure something else out.
I also didnt want to lose the benefits of breastfeeding. I had already planned on pumping while I was at school anyway, so it just became a full-time thing and still is.
Why do I do it? I feel this overwhelming sense of guilt for not being able to make breast feeding work for us. Its silly, because she still gets only breast milk, and we bond other ways. There is such a negativity towards exclusively pumping. I dont know how many doctors, including Rowen's pediatrician, told me that this wasnt going to work and that nursing was the only acceptable way to feed her. Its so ridiculous to me that the doctors would try to make me feel bad for feeding my child. Whatever. The pediatrician thinks I nurse Rowen. Rowen is gaining weight and is healthy and exclusive pumping works. If it means that my freezer looks like this for the next 6 months, so be it :)
Home-made baby food
Its cheaper than jar food and is better for her too. Simple as that. I enjoy making her baby food and knowing exactly what is in the food I am feeding her. Also I can make 3 months worth of food at once and not have to worry about it.
I hope that this post helps other moms be confident in their decisions. Just because its not what everyone else is doing, and just because other people dont understand the things you do, does not mean that it is wrong. You are a mom. Whether you formula feed, breast feed, use disposable diapers, cloth diapers, whatever, you know whats best for your child. Be confident in your parenting and dont let other people make you second guess yourself. As long as you are happy, and your baby is happy, you are doing this parenting thing right <3