As many of you know, Porgie and I had a very difficult time with breastfeeding. After a month of breastfeeding exclusively, Porgie had failed to regain her birth weight, and I was an emotional wreck. Although I was tempted to switch to formula (which the pediatrician strongly recommended), I ultimately decided to primarily pump for the next 5 months (I still attempted to breastfeed Porgie when she was upset and during the night). Pumping was hard (I never had a very good supply), but it was totally worth it. Because of my pumping efforts, Porgie receive breast milk for the first 6 months of her life. Although it took a long time for me to come to terms with pumping, I am proud of my accomplishment.
Of course, I am going to give breastfeeding another try. I threw out all of the bottles, except for 4 small ones. I have my pump cleaned and ready to use (Thank you Amber!). And I already purchased a few nursing bras.
Even though I am ready to give breastfeeding another shot, I do not plan on pumping exclusively again. In fact, I am only giving breastfeeding a limited time span in my household. If things are not going smoothly after 2 months, I am going to give up on nursing.
Although many of you might not agree with this approach, I am not going to let breastfeeding dominate my life this time around. I spent WAY TOO MUCH time and energy trying to breastfed Porgie. By the end of the first month, I was still crying uncontrollably, calling the lactation consultant everyday, and waking Porgie up every two hours to nurse - even at night. Honestly, I feel like breastfeeding was hindering our relationship instead of helping it. I was so stressed out, and I think Porgie could sense my anxiety. After I made the decision to start pumping, life instantly got better. I stopped having emotional meltdowns, Porgie started gaining weight, and we all started getting a little more sleep.
With Porgie, I made the decision to pump. However, I will not have that luxury this time around. I am going to have a toddler and a newborn to care for. I will not have time to pump for 20-30 minutes, every two hours, ALL DAY LONG - in addition to cleaning all of the pumping supplies and then feeding Izzy from bottle. And of course, that would mean I would have bottles to clean too.
I am hopeful that things will go much smoother this time, and Izzy will be a champion nurser. But if breastfeeding begins to make me feel like I am spiraling towards depression, I am definitely going to stop.