Friday, February 17, 2017

When breast ISN'T best: our baby formula story

“This giveaway is a partnership with Nakturnal, with a prize of a gift certificate."

*CLOSED*


Before I had my first baby, Audrey, I was certain I would do everything right. I would have a non-induced vaginal birth, I would never put my baby to sleep on her stomach, I would use all-natural soaps and detergents and I would for SURE breastfeed until she was at least year old.

Well, right off the bat I ended up with an emergency C-section. I should have known right then to scrap all my carefully-laid plans, but I clung to the rest of them. I truly wanted what was best for my baby, and I was determined to make it happen!

Within the first few weeks of Audrey's life, it became very apparent that my daughter wasn't tolerating my breast milk at all. Each time I would feed her, it would only be about 15 - 20 minutes before she would start screaming her head off in pain. She also threw up a LOT. I mean, Exorcist-style projectile vomiting every day. I couldn't keep up with it all.

In addition to the cracked, bleeding nipples and latching trouble that accompany newborn nursing, I was also recovering from a C-section and couldn't easily hold Audrey in the traditional cradle hold. That little problem further complicated things for us. She seemed to only want to eat from a bottle, so I started pumping a lot and this reduced my milk supply. Plus, she was still crying and throwing up frequently.

All these issues led to crying spells, exhaustion and immense guilt on my part. So, it wasn't long before we decided to switch Audrey to a non-lactose formula. As soon as Dillon and I made this choice for our daughter, things started looking up. My baby was suddenly happy and stopped upchucking every drop of milk she ate. She slept better and cried a lot less. And we all began to bond so well! It was clearly the right decision for us. And although I did breastfeed my next two children (and I LOVE breastfeeding), I am so glad baby formula allowed Audrey to thrive.

bottle feeding, formula feeding, baby formula

Since that experience, I have made a point never to make a mother feel guilty for choosing to formula-feed. It turns out, sometimes breast isn't best.

Of course, in theory it is. According to this WebMD article, breast milk contains "a nearly perfect mix of vitamins, protein, and fat -- everything your baby needs to grow." La Leche League International's Web site also asserts that breast milk is full of antibodies which allows it to support a baby's developing immune system. The human body is a living miracle!

But for some families, breastfeeding is either too difficult on the mother and/or the baby, or it's not possible due to food allergies, adoption, low milk production and a host of other factors. Thankfully, scientists have developed a solution to these problems -- baby formula! It really is a healthy alternative to breastfeeding and nothing to be ashamed about. (Also, science is cool, am I right?)

Today, there exists a wide array of baby formulas for a variety of needs. I remember staring at the massive wall of baby formula at the grocery store and having no clue where to start. It's always a good idea to consult with a pediatrician on matters like this, but Diapers.com is also a very thorough resource for helping you select the best baby formula for your child.

Speaking of Diapers.com, they're giving away a $50 gift card to their Web site, which you can use to purchase diapers (duh) as well as just about any other baby-related doo-dads! Serious when I say they have everything. All you have to do to enter is leave a comment telling me your favorite part of parenthood or taking care of babies. It's that simple! You can also earn an additional entry by sharing this post on Twitter. Please use the Rafflecopter widget below! The giveaway starts TODAY and ends in one week, on February 24 at midnight!

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28 comments:

  1. Watching them experience life for the first time!

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  2. Snuggles and smiles. And watching them learn new things and discover the world.

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  3. When they fall asleep all snuggled up in your arms and the look in their eyes when they discover something new

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  4. I love when they first start to smile at you! So precious

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  5. Seeing all of the first in a baby's life is the best! I love seeing how they grow, develop, and change right before your eyes!

    Thanks for the chance to win!
    wildorchid985 at gmail dot com

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  6. Holding their hand. I love the natural reflex of a newborn to curl their tiny hand around your finger, but I especially love toddler hand-holds because they are so rare. Just last night my almost two year old fell asleep holding my hand; he wouldn't let me pry it away (though come on, I really didn't want to). I hope my kiddos never get sick of cuddling me and holding my hand ��

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  7. The newborn phase is my favorite. They're so tiny, so snuggly, and their little heads smell so good!! I agree 100% that "fed is best." I've been able to breastfeed and it was a blessing, but I celebrate every mom and all the effort and love she gives to her sweet little ones, no matter how they are nourished.

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  8. Snuggling them to sleep is my favorite!

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  9. I love how intensely I fall in love with my whole family the first few crazy weeks after the baby is born. I feel like adding a new baby, while definitely challenging, can strengthen the love in a family.
    I ended up formula feeding both my babies after trying my hardest to breast feed both of them. It's hard sometimes to feel judged as a "failure" so I appreciate hearing other's stories.

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  10. I love watching them achieve new milestone and experience new things!

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  11. Oh my ogsh I loved this post on so many levels! I couldn't nurse either of my kids. I dont' produce milk at all. The nurses would squeeze and pulverize my boobs and nothing came and I felt so guilty for about a minute until I realized that it was ok. My mom couldn't breastfeed, my grandma either so it's a genetic thing I guess for us. But I am also SOOOOOO grateful for forula so my babies could live!

    My favorite part of motherhood is just watching them grow into their own little people. Such personalities!

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  12. Their first smiles and just holding them constantly ❤️

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  13. The way my babies look at me and smile...nothing but complete love and adoration in their eyes. I love being their favorite! I love snuggling them too!

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  14. I love the newborn phase, skin to skin when they are born, and just feeling that bond!❤-Sallee Wood

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  15. I love all the firsts...first smile, first time rolling over, first time waving goodbye, first time going on the potty😬, first time saying Mama...

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  16. I love it when they look at you and either laugh or smile! It melts my heart!

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  17. Love their squishy little bodies, especially when they're cuddled up on me.

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  18. I love seeing their curiousity and joy in little things. Thanks for the great post, Jenna!

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  19. I always love the little things toddlers say. It's interesting to get a glimpse into what is going through their head or how they perceive things

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  20. i love seeing my baby do all their firsts!

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  21. Squishes and cuddles and having someone to blame those darn postpartum toots on. ;) (Not that that's ever happened to me...)

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  22. I added to my Buffer Feed. It should post tonight.

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