When Carson was born 4 & 1/2 years ago, I was determined I was breastfeeding him. I knew what the benefits were, I knew how to do it, heck I even taught new moms how to do it at work.
He was born and was a champ at breastfeeding from the get go. It hurt like h*&$ but I knew it was best for him. His first feeding was 35 minutes of good breastfeeding. He went to the nursery for his bath while I passed out from the meds I had been given. The next feeding went well too, but every hour he was wanting to breastfeed. I would feed him and he would seem unsatisfied.
By day 2 of life, he was already very jaundiced and not getting much from me because my milk had not come in yet. The decision was made to supplement him with formula to help flush out the bilirubin. I would breastfeed for 20-30 minutes, but then he would down an entire 2 ounce bottle! The kid was a pig! We came home and continued breastfeeding and supplementing. I would pump after feedings(getting maybe an ounce or so) and use that to supplement the next feeding. We breastfed every 60-90 minutes, meaning I got no sleep and was falling asleep with him at my breast. We continued this until day 4 when he was back in the hospital for a day for the jaundice. He still breastfed, but now was taking 2-3 ounces after breastfeeding. Still, it was ok with me because he was at least getting some of my milk.
Just shy of 2 weeks after he was born, everything came to a screeching halt for us. I was admitted to the hospital and put on IV antibiotics and pain medications that didn't allow me to breastfeed . He was home with my parents, while I was in the hospital "pumping and dumping" my breastmilk. This set us back quite a bit. I came home after 2 1/2 days in the hospital and tried to resume our breastfeeding. We did so for about a week longer, then decided to just switch entirely to formula. Carson was happier with a full tummy on formula, and I was happy knowing he got the colostrum that was so important early on.
This time around, I'm unsure about what I'm going to do. Ideally I would like to pump and bottle feed baby #2. Hopefully I produce enough to be successful at this. But in my mind, I still think about just going with formula from the get go this time. I know lots of people would have a fit that I'm saying or even thinking this. You know what though? It's ok if I don't breastfeed. Lots of babies are formula fed everyday and grow up to be just as smart and healthy as breastfed babies. My breasts will thank me for the decreased pain, my body will appreciate the little bit of more sleep I will get, and my baby will still be just as happy with formula as breastmilk.