Tuesday, August 23, 2011

She Wanted Momma's Milk, One Year of Exclusive Breast Feeding

When it was time for my first born to start solids at six months of age, being a "politically correct" mom (a good mother who follows advisory sentiments without question) I purchased several jars of baby food, cereal and bananas.

My daughter had other ideas. She disliked being spoon-fed and seemed repulsed at the taste. Her mouth writhed as her tongue juggled the food from one side to the next. And soon afterwards shoved it out of her mouth as if escorting an unruly, uninvited guest. Yes, it was seventeen years ago, but I remember that time so clearly. I was doing what I was supposed to do, and felt horrible that I couldn't "teach" her how to eat. After a while of trying to feed her cereal, bananas and other wasted jars of baby food, I gave up and decided to feed her as she wanted. She wanted momma's milk. Nothing more.

It dawned on me after a period of feeling as though I was depriving her of real food... that she was perfectly fine. To say she was chunky was an understatement. She tipped the scales quite a bit and it was all breast milk. I ended up nursing her exclusively for a little over a year and she was a happy, chunky baby!

I took the same approach with the rest of my children, letting them tell me when they were ready for solids. With the exception of one child, I did breast feed exclusively for a year. Every single child is truly unique. Not only in personality, but in weight. Not every child had that same chunkiness, but they were definitely happy and content. What I have learned is that weight can be more of a reflection of a child's body type, than a measurement of health. A happy child is content and exhibits happiness. We all know what an unhappy child behaves like!

My baby girl (#7) is nearly a year old now and loads up on breast milk as her main diet. She is not only a happy and energetic baby, but  tips the scales at 22 pounds. It seems as though my days of exclusive nursing are soon coming to an end, she expresses an interest and enjoyment in food. She LOVES Cherrios and revels in picking up round orbs and sticking 'em in her mouth.

You know some things may not make sense when it happens, but eventually certain puzzling details emerge to form a full picture of comprehension. As I look back at my first child and my attempt to feed her solids, namely bananas, it was worrisome, and frustrating out of sheer inexperience on my part.... but here's the kicker, my daughter to this day absolutely abhors fruit!

Have you breast fed exclusively for a year? What has been your experience?

2 comments:

  1. I breastfed three of my five kids for a year. I absolutely loved it. It's awesome how they'll tell you when they're ready for solids :0)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hi Elisabeth!

    Yes it is awesome! Babies are a lot smarter than given credit for. More often than not, they are the experts we should "consult" with when introducing solids.

    ReplyDelete

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