This morning, I ended up doing the one thing I have dreaded more than any other in my short time as a mommy - supplementing with formula. After a full 8 months and 3 weeks of exclusive breastfeeding, there was not enough pumped milk to leave for G.
I wanted to be the one to give him the first bottle, fearing that he may refuse it or have a reaction so, I gave him 2 ounces. He drank the bottle in record time, as I cried, and wanted more. Honestly, for a few minutes I didn't know whether to be relieved or upset that he had no problem with the formula. Then, I knocked some sense into myself. My son is a champion eater and that is a good thing.
Today I am struggling with mommy guilt, disappointment and sadness. I was not ready to wean yet, even if it is partial. I know that supplementing means the beginning of the end of my nursing relationship with G and wasn't ready. I know so many women celebrate this time and getting their body back but, I'm feeling the exact opposite. I loved being able to provide the only nutrition our son needed for over 5 months and looked forward to making it past this point.
So, what now?
I plan to carry on nursing whenever I am home and hope that my nighttime and early morning supply hangs on for a good while longer. And, I will continue to pump at work as long as I am producing enough while at work to not be physically uncomfortable and to justify carrying the pump through New York City. And, I will try not to carry this disappointment beyond today.
George is 8 months, 3 weeks today.