One day as I was scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed, I saw, in one of my groups, where someone had shared Medela's album of nursing badges and asked which badge matched for our particular situation.
Just a little props for Medela since I am sharing there badges... I never would've gotten to where I am today without Medela. I bought a double electric breast pump before we even started trying for our baby because I wanted to make sure if nursing didn't work out that I could at least pump and provide that liquid gold. During the first 24 hours after giving birth, my son had completely torn up my nipples. I cried when he cried because I didn't want to feed him and it got to the point where I just dreaded picking him up. Fortunately, I had this pump. I started pumping and giving him (Medela Calma) bottles. The nipples on these bottles made my son actually suck for the milk in a unique way compared to any other nipples I've seen. My nipples took forever to heal and he still had a horrible latch. I pumped, drank water, drank gatorade, ate oatmeal, took fenugreek, garlic, calcium, magnesium, brewer's yeast, and blessed thistle, but still, I did not provide enough by pumping to give him nothing but breastmilk. I had to supplement. It killed me. I just knew the whole time I was pregnant that I was NOT going to have another formula baby (and the guilt I had felt with my first) again. We used a whole can of Gerber formula. My son was 5 weeks old and we were running out of formula. I was determined that we would not buy a second can. I was determined. I put him to the breast all but twice a day that week. It was ROUGH. And when he got bottles, he got pumped breastmilk. By 6.5 weeks we were exclusively breastfeeding.
There is something so different and beautiful about breastfeeding vs. bottle feeding, but honestly, I wish I'd never ever felt guilty about bottle feeding and giving my first born "poison" to eat as I'd been told by some ugly people. Both are beautiful. Both are nourishing. Breast isn't always best. I really appreciate this article written by Nikke Whitman expressing that "Bottle Feeding is Beautiful (too!)"
So tell me, which badge have you earned? Have you earned a formula badge? Formula feeding is hard work. We need badges for formula mommies too, don't you think?