First off, I am a believer that breastmilk is still best for babies under two (2) years of age (as advertisements always go). In my personal experience however, no matter how much I prepared myself during pregnancy to have my baby breastfed by the time I give birth to her...no milk came out of me. Well okay, I WAS able to express milk while still in the hospital...a full one (1) ounce! Yes. But that was it!
I drank plenty of liquids. I took malunggay tablets (said to aid new mothers in producing more breast milk). I used breast pumps from Avent (their on-the-go set). I did all those things... until FOUR (4) MONTHS after I gave birth! If you are not able to and cannot express breastmilk no matter what, then what can you do? No matter how long you try? To the point that you get more frustrated? I mean, I tried for around 120 days! No one can say I didn't make an effort.
Yes, I went through the usual self-pity. I blamed myself always. I felt incomplete both as a woman and as a mother. I believed then that my baby and I will NEVER be close because we never had that bonding experience a mother and her baby can only get through breastfeeding. I thought, then, that my baby will grow up sickly and getting infected by all sorts of diseases. Wow! Can you imagine what all those thoughts does to a first-time mother who just gave birth? Well, sad to say, that is how breastfeeding advocates make us think and believe.
At the time our baby was born, the hospital nursery, being very considerate of our wishes to have our baby "purely breastfed", let our baby have nothing but sugar-water. Two (2) days after, when informed that she was losing weight and needed to have milk soon, we gave the go-signal to let her drink formula milk prescribed by our pediatrician.
We started with ENFALAC A+. When she turned 6 months, our doctor changed her milk to ENFAPRO A. My baby daughter is now 1 year and 1 month old and she now drinks ENFAGROW A (in vanilla flavor).
I don't know if her formula milk has anything to do with it (and I won't pretend to know)...but I'm proud to say that, aside from the required monthly check-ups to our pediatrician, we never had to take her to the hospital for confinement (knock on wood!). That, aside from the usual cough and colds, our baby was never majorly sick (knock on wood again!). That, compared to other babies of the same age, my baby learned to walk a lot earlier, my baby is taller, more talkative and sociable.
If my husband and I were to take-to-heart all that the La Leche League advocates and wrote about, then I guess we are just REALLY LUCKY PARENTS and our little princess just a REALLY LUCKY BABY!
My baby is indeed a very happy child! She has the most precious smile! Her laugh is the heartiest one I have heard from a little bundle of joy! She ALWAYS looks for me and, when the opportunity is there, ALWAYS wants to be near me. She motions to me when she wants me to read her books for her. She loves it when we do things together. My husband always tells me how great a job I am doing for our baby girl...and that makes me jump for joy!
I'm happy. My family is healthy. I thank God everyday for this blessing.