Wednesday, December 23, 2009

It Gets Easier

In my goofy prenatal class, when we got to the breastfeeding section of the class, a chart was passed around. It looked something like the chart above.

The vertical axis is effort level and the horizontal axis is time. Blue for formula, red for breast. The idea is that formula is always the same level of effort with sterilizing, mixing, carrying junk around. It doesn't vary.

Breastfeeding often starts off bloody tricky, but over time it gets easier. I am here to tell you, this is true. Surely, an oversimplification, but true. (Note: I haven't actually formula fed a baby, but I've read up on it a bit, like the things you need to do to keep everything clean, and the gear you've got to carry around.. it sounds like a lot of work. Though I'm sure you get used to it too.)

With the baby almost five months old now, I feel like we're really getting the hang of it. She's turning into a little person more and more every day. She's easy for me to feed. She's easy for the DH to feed when I'm at work. She sometimes eats so much that she spits up a bit. That never used to happen, so I feel a bit more confident that she's eating plenty. Well, that plus her weight being in the 95th percentile!

Apparently I'm even discrete about nursing in public, which is not entirely intentional.

We're going to keep it up until she's done. I expect it to not always be as easy and sweet as it is right now, but I know it will always be rewarding and good for her.

How has feeding been challenging for you? Did it get easier?


Anonymous said...

I am breastfeeding my second right now, and he's 16 months. I have to say, it definitely does get easier with time. And even more so, with a second baby I found that I faced fewer difficulties. My chart would be more level this time, for sure, and pretty much always lower than formula feeding.

Shannon said...

Yes, and I'd even make that curve steeper, frankly. It was waaay hard at the start--the in-tears and swearing I can't do it type of hard--and then after a few months it was like no effort at all.

CaroLyn said...

@Amber - thanks, that's cool to hear!

@Shannon - right! I didn't feel inclined to sit and twiddle the numbers long enough for it to feel right. I woulda had it start even higher and plateau lower. But I figured folks would get my drift!